Operations at the Sharavathy Hydel Power Plant came to an abrupt halt following a fire in February, which left the state of Karnataka - home to tech hub and capital city Bangalore - strapped for power. The power plant used to generate 700 megawatts (MW) of power, accounting for almost 30 percent of the state's power generation. The incident brought all ten turbine units to a halt. Restoring power flow became critical for Karnataka Power Corporation (KPC), the publically owned power utility responsible for the plant.
While all major primary equipment was intact, the entire control room, cables and panels were destroyed by the fire. KPC wanted a solution that would prioritize restoring at least three turbine units and their corresponding 220 kilovolt (kV) outgoing lines. The approach was to bring part of the plant back online quickly to reinstate partial power supply and then focus on restoring the rest.
The crisis called for a reliable technology provider with the ability to deliver within the tight timeline and to the highest quality standards. After evaluating various suppliers, KPC awarded this project to ABB for the supply and commissioning of generator control and protection panels and two 220 kV line control and protection panels, with a delivery time requirement of only ten days!
Meeting a common objective
"We understood the importance of this power plant to the state of Karnataka and mobilized all our resources to meet the stringent timelines" said Massimo Danieli, Managing Director of ABB's Grid Automation business unit, a part of the company's Power Grids division. "We were able to restore power supply from three of the turbines in record time working closely with KPC to achieve a common objective, as a great example of business-led collaboration and customer focus."
"ABB has proven to be a loyal and trustworthy partner to have by our side in tough times and we truly appreciate that the team walked many extra miles to complete this mission-critical task within such a short time frame", said Shri. M. Maheswar Rao (IAS), Managing Director, KPC. "The data connection to the Load Dispatch Center is now restored."
With the power plant up and running, KPC will now focus on the complete restoration of the remaining seven turbine units, but most importantly, the lights are back on in Karnataka.