GIZ India and Fraunhofer ISE to support the use of solar water heating systems for industrial processes in India

Project SoPro-India: Workshop on Solar Process Heat for Industrial Applications, New Delhi

New Delhi/Freiburg, Oct 2014: Indian industries consume roughly 15 million tons of fuel oil every year in thermal application below 250°C. Solar heating systems for industrial processes (SHIP) have a substantial potential to replace fossil fuels in Indian industry, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and costs. Experts estimate less than one percent of existing 5.73 GWth capacity is installed in process heat applications in Indian industries. The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) India, with the support of the Fraunhofer Institute of Solar Energy ISE, Germany, is implementing the project SoPro-India, to increase awareness of solar water heating technology and to improve the confidence in the technology by developing solutions to monitor the performance of solar water heating systems.

On 16th October 2014, GIZ along with its co-operating partner – the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), conducted a well-attended workshop in New Delhi to present interesting first results of the project and to discuss with stakeholders how to strengthen the market deployment. In his inaugural address, joint secretary MNRE Mr. Tarun Kapoor said “until now solar heat has been widely utilised in residential, commercial and institutional segments. However, the large potential of solar heat in industrial processes is still untapped. With initiatives like SoPro-India we are on the right path to overcome the barriers and unlock the huge potential.”

Mr. Timon Herzog, principal advisor ComSolar of GIZ in India, shared information about the SoPro-India initiative. It aims to support the SHIP deployment in Indian Industries in low-mid temperature applications for reducing green-house-gas emissions thus mitigating climate change. SoPro-India is carried out within the framework of the project ComSolar (commercialization of solar energy in urban and industrial areas). ComSolar is financed by German Federal Ministry of Environment, Nature conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB).

Mr. Gerhard Stryi-Hipp, Head of Energy Policy and project leader of SoPro-India at Fraunhofer ISE, explained the scientific monitoring systems for SHIP systems, which were developed and installed by Fraunhofer ISE at a dairy in Himachal Pradesh and a chemical company in Hyderabad in October. “We identified significant differences between SHIP technology in Europe and India. A fundamental challenge in the Indian SHIP market is the lack of knowledge about how the installed SHIP effectively perform. But we are optimistic that SoPro-India can make valuable contributions to the development of simple monitoring solutions for Indian SHIP.” SoPro-India aims to use the experiences of the scientific monitoring systems installed at two SHIP systems to propose a concept for simple, robust and reliable monitoring concept for SHIP systems.

Mr. Mangal Akole, chairman of the Solar Thermal Federation of India (STFI) shared the opinion, that implementing monitoring solutions would increase the payback time of typically 2-3 years by only some months, but could increase the customer confidence significantly, thus supporting market deployment of SHIP systems. Regarding the German-Indian co-operation he stated that “training by German experts on designing solar thermal systems for Indian engineers of manufactures and system integrators would really be useful and facilitate technical know-how transfer from Germany to India”. All information developed by SoPro-India, the case-studies, the concept of the monitoring systems, the monitoring results and basic information for industry customers on motivation, technical solutions and quality and certification will be provided on the website www.soproindia.in. 

Mr. Tarun Kapoor, Joint Secretary, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, Government of India, giving the inaugural address at the workshop

Mr. Tarun Kapoor, Joint Secretary, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, Government of India, giving the inaugural address at the workshop