• Workshop organised on "Solar Energy Applications in selected industrial sectors"

Industrial sectors promising for solar energy applications (Solar thermal sector study)

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Energy intensive industrial sectors can contribute to rapid scaling of off-grid solar applications if they actively exhibit eagerness and willingness to substitute their energy requirement from conventional sources to solar energy. However, it is important to identify industrial sectors that possess significant potential for adopting solar applications to meet their process energy requirements in a commercially viable manner so that these industries act as successful demonstration projects with a high replication potential.

This demanded the initiation of studies to identify suitable applications for solar energy technologies and estimate their replication potential across industrial sectors. One such joint initiative of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India and GIZ aimed at identifying promising sectors for the commercialisation of solar energy in industrial sectors in the country. The objective of the study was to identify opportunities which are commercially viable, have the potential for replication and can contribute to India’s National Solar Mission target of 15 million m2 of solar thermal collector area by 2017 and 20 million m2 by 2020.

Thirty seven (37) identified industrial sectors were mapped against various energy consuming processes/applications. Of these fifteen (15) were ranked based on key parameters among others total energy consumption, heating/cooling load as percentage of total energy consumption, captive power generation capacities.

A detailed pre-feasibility study was carried out for the top 10 sectors. The study involved identifying suitable processes that can be complemented with solar energy in the industry, mapping different solar technologies for the identified processes and estimating the replacement potential of conventional energy.

The study helped developed capacities both internally and externally in understanding the potential and challenges in solar process heat sector.

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Summary

  • To identify potential of solar thermal application in the industrial process heat sector, a study was carried out by GIZ analysing ten main industrial sectors
  • Five sectors were further identified with highest theoretical potential.
  • Five sectors are electroplating, food processing, textiles, pharmaceutical and pulp & paper.