Power from rooftop

The government’s plan to install 100 GW by 2022 includes 40 GW of rooftop solar. Making an all new beginning in the rooftop solar sector, that was practiced very limitedly in the country.
 India is gearing up for rapid development throughout the country in all possible sectors. With the government wanting to make India a manufacturing hub, the basic and fundamental need for this is availability of power which will encourage companies all over to set up in India. Currently, the country faces power crisis making it difficult to provide electricity for basic use to its citizens. The government is focusing on renewable energy to reduce dependency on traditional sources, by encouraging solar rooftop projects in the country. Surely, installing solar panels on ones roof may not solve the country’s energy problem, but will definitely reduce the pressure and dependency on traditional sources.
Need for rooftop solarIndia is blessed with 300 clear sunny days, amounting to 3,000 hours of sunshine which is equivalent to over 5,000 trillion kWh. There is a need to utilise the available energy. The country is seeing a rise in number of rooftop solar installations, with the governments focus on generating energy through renewable sources.
Speaking on the rooftop solar potential Ketan Mehta, Director, Rays Power Infra says, “Solar rooftop has huge potential in a country like India where there is already a dearth of power supply. This will not only reduce the dependency on traditional sources but will also help the government to provide electricity in various parts of the country where they are unable to supply power due to shortage of power supply.” India being a tropical country has huge untapped potential for rooftop solar as compared to European countries.
“Solar rooftop can definitely reduce the dependency on traditional sources. Solar technology is silent, modular with no moving parts which makes it a perfect solution for rooftop installation. Adoption by residential consumer is a key indicator of a matured solar market,” feels Hitesh Doshi, Chairman and Managing Director, WAAREE Group. Traditional grid connected power source suffers from transmission losses and also last mile connectivity problems. Solar rooftops can solve these problems as it generates power at the place of consumption and also sends excess power generated to the grid.
Vineet Mittal, Vice Chairman, Welspun Renewables says, “Rooftop solar is one of the most efficient and cost-effective source of reducing dependency on traditional sources of energy. It reduces consumer’s dependence on grid power and importantly, on diesel, the cost of which is only going to increase.” Rooftops have two-fold advantage for commercial establishments. One, maximum power generation happens during the peak usage hours. Two, solar power tariff is close to that of commercial power and is expected to decrease further. Rooftop will help add to solar capacity while minimising land use.
“Rooftop solar systems have high leverage over commercial consumers as their business depends on a continuous and economic power source,” states R Chellappan, Managing Director, SWELECT Energy Systems Limited. As a corporate, industrial, commercial or residential consumer, they can generate green power by utilising existing architecture like canopy parking lot, slope or flat roof and wide terrace.
Offerings for rooftop solar projectsSurely, with large solar power projects being commissioned solar companies are looking at delivering all possible solutions/products to consumers. Every company is looking to capture the opportunities existing in the solar sector. Rooftop solar projects seem to be quiet popular with companies providing EPC solutions for these projects. 
Waaree Energies is a solar EPC company and they undertake turnkey projects. Solar rooftop projects are usually available as on-grid and off-grid, they provide both options. The company has also commissioned solar-DG hybrid projects which are preferred by industrial consumers with DG sets. They have also appointed channel partners across India which enables them to reach out to remote locations for installations.
On the other hand Welspun Renewables, are very optimistic about the future of rooftop solar. From building large scale ground mounted projects, the company has successfully constructed three rooftop projects in record time. Through cumulative 795 KW capacities, they are reducing the carbon footprint by helping to generate an estimated 1,174,000 kWh of clean energy annually. The prestigious projects have been set up to meet captive power needs of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur – 192kWp, Ansal University – 100kWp and Medanta Medicity Hospital – 500kWp. The 100 kWp Ansal university project, developed by Ansal Colonisers will help nearly 2,000 users by supplying clean energy. Approximately 1,000 faculty members and students at IIT Kanpur, through the 192 kWp plant will be using solar energy to teach and carry out their experiments. The largest among the three projects, The Medanta Medicity project is built over two extended parking lots that can house over 300 cars at a time.Rays Power Infra primarily focuses on EPC of rooftop installations for 100 KW and above. Their primarily target include health institutions, educational institutions, government buildings, industries, etc. They also have expertise in RESCO model wherein the company installs the solar power plant with their own funding and provide power to the rooftop owner. The rooftop owner gets the benefit of reliable solar power which is supplied to them at a reduced price as compared to grid electricity.
SWELECT offers a complete range of PV modules; solar power solutions ranging from simple standalone systems with power storage, rooftop systems with net metering, grid connected systems as well as MW scale SPV farms. In line with the Indian government’s latest make in India campaign, SWELECT offers modules, inverters and mounting structure, all in one package. This helps investors to buy everything under one roof and enjoy possible tax savings (for complete project inputs) as well as quality assurance.
Challenges in rooftop solar projectsThe government’s new renewable energy policy has set a 100 GW solar capacity target of which 40 GW is through rooftop solar. Solar rooftop project implementation has been a major challenge for solar companies. With absence of clear cut and uniform policies for all states solar companies are having a tough time.
Commenting on the challenges involved in rooftop solar Mr Mittal comments, “There has to be more clarity around the policies for rooftop solar. The absence of subsidies has made generation very expensive. Since storage and leakage are some of the biggest hurdles in power, development of battery technology is going to be crucial.” He further adds, “The approach of consumers also needs to change. It is now imperative that we see clean energy as an urgent need to mitigate carbon emissions and attain environmental and health sustainability.” Consumers must be educated about the advantages to attain energy efficiency and that many state governments are buying surplus power. The government should help by providing incentives for schemes, so that more people feel encouraged to adopt it. We must look at the long-term profits, rather than short term gains.
“Capex requirement is a challenge for these projects, even with government subsidies. Customers look for cheaper source of finance so that they can achieve break even in 3 year timeframe,” says Mr Doshi. He further adds, “Power storage is another challenge because the batteries are very costly and those who have evening peak demands can’t match their supply demand situation. Net metering application needs to be streamlined so that it becomes more popular.”
When asked about the challenges in rooftop solar Mr Mehta opines, “The key challenge is the reluctance of the various state discoms to acknowledge power from solar rooftop. Various state governments have come up with net metering policy but those policies are still not air tight which leaves huge implementation hurdles. This can be reduced by urging the discoms to accept rooftop solar power and providing a single window clearance for net metering policy in every state.”
The major challenge with solar rooftop projects is a lack of awareness. Mr Chellappan says, “There needs to be an understanding of how much power is consumed by the users and how it correlates with the solar system installed and the power that is produced. Consumers are not clear about the subsidies due to lack of clarity from government as the situation is yes/no always.” There is no FIT (Feed in Tariff) like in several other countries. He further states, “While exporting power (net metering) to grid in solar rooftop projects, state wise policy also varies for different consumers, like in some states power export (Net metering) is approved for residential consumers and not for industrial consumers but in some states for both residential and industrial consumers are available.” These types of policies have to be part of the state’s campaign to spread awareness on renewable energy.  Loans should also be readily available for renewable energy products.
Contributing to India’s mission of 100 GW by 2022The government’s mission to install 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022 has been very encouraging. Understanding the need for electricity, the government has set 40 GW of solar power capacity to be generated by rooftop solar projects targeting the residential/commercial sectors as well.
Speaking about the company’s contribution to 100 GW mission Mr Doshi says, “Currently we have the largest module manufacturing capacity of 500 MW in India at Surat, Gujarat. We have an experience of more than 215 MW of EPC experience and more than 150 MW of projects under construction in India and Japan. We would manufacture 2 GW of modules and commission 4 GW of projects by 2022.”
The governments focus on renewable sector has encouraged companies to invest in the sector and companies from small to large scale have started commissioning various projects across the country. Rays Power Infra having a portfolio of 100 MW has commissioned projects with 170 MW down the pipeline. “We are also working as an independent power producer in a big way. We share the enthusiasm of the government for promoting green energy and are very keen to participate in all government tenders to provide a brighter future for coming generations. Our primary target is to make India self dependent in terms of energy requirements and to reduce the carbon footprint of India,” says Mr Mehta.
SWELECT has installed over 1,700 roof top installations and plans to continue the trend in the upcoming years. As a part of the initiatives towards achieving this goal, the government has also approved net metering technology (i.e., exporting power back to the grid) in more than 20 states, with accelerated depreciation benefits. “With the future forecast of increase in PV module demand, we increased production capacity of PV Module in our manufacturing company (HHV Solar Technologies Limited) from 40 MW to 100 MW,” says Mr Chellappan.
With emphasis on solar rooftop by the government it will help reduce dependency on other sources of energy and also help us achieve the set target. “We are very confident and excited to see solar power becoming the next big contributor in India’s energy future,” states Mr Mittal. Welspun Renewables has made a green commitment of 11 GW capacity additions. The 11,001 MW capacities will be developed as 8,660 MW of solar and 2,341 MW of wind power projects. Towards this goal, in next few years Welspun Renewables will be setting up 5 GW capacities, and of this 1 GW will be commissioned well within this financial year. ____________________________Rooftop solar is one of the most efficient and cost-effective source of reducing dependency on traditional sources of energy.
Vineet Mittal, Vice Chairman, Welspun Renewables____________________________________
Solar technology is silent, modular with no moving parts which makes it a perfect solution for rooftop installation.
Hitesh Doshi, Chairman & Managing Director, WAAREE Group________________________________
The key challenge is the reluctance of the various state discoms to acknowledge power from solar rooftop.
Ketan Mehta, Director, Rays Power Infra__________________________
Rooftop solar systems have high leverage over commercial consumers as their business depends on a continuous and economic power source
R Chellappan, Managing Director, SWELECT Energy Systems

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Power from rooftop

The government’s plan to install 100 GW by 2022 includes 40 GW of rooftop solar. Making an all new beginning in the rooftop solar sector, that was practiced very limitedly in the country.
 India is gearing up for rapid development throughout the country in all possible sectors. With the government wanting to make India a manufacturing hub, the basic and fundamental need for this is availability of power which will encourage companies all over to set up in India. Currently, the country faces power crisis making it difficult to provide electricity for basic use to its citizens. The government is focusing on renewable energy to reduce dependency on traditional sources, by encouraging solar rooftop projects in the country. Surely, installing solar panels on ones roof may not solve the country’s energy problem, but will definitely reduce the pressure and dependency on traditional sources.
Need for rooftop solarIndia is blessed with 300 clear sunny days, amounting to 3,000 hours of sunshine which is equivalent to over 5,000 trillion kWh. There is a need to utilise the available energy. The country is seeing a rise in number of rooftop solar installations, with the governments focus on generating energy through renewable sources.
Speaking on the rooftop solar potential Ketan Mehta, Director, Rays Power Infra says, “Solar rooftop has huge potential in a country like India where there is already a dearth of power supply. This will not only reduce the dependency on traditional sources but will also help the government to provide electricity in various parts of the country where they are unable to supply power due to shortage of power supply.” India being a tropical country has huge untapped potential for rooftop solar as compared to European countries.
“Solar rooftop can definitely reduce the dependency on traditional sources. Solar technology is silent, modular with no moving parts which makes it a perfect solution for rooftop installation. Adoption by residential consumer is a key indicator of a matured solar market,” feels Hitesh Doshi, Chairman and Managing Director, WAAREE Group. Traditional grid connected power source suffers from transmission losses and also last mile connectivity problems. Solar rooftops can solve these problems as it generates power at the place of consumption and also sends excess power generated to the grid.
Vineet Mittal, Vice Chairman, Welspun Renewables says, “Rooftop solar is one of the most efficient and cost-effective source of reducing dependency on traditional sources of energy. It reduces consumer’s dependence on grid power and importantly, on diesel, the cost of which is only going to increase.” Rooftops have two-fold advantage for commercial establishments. One, maximum power generation happens during the peak usage hours. Two, solar power tariff is close to that of commercial power and is expected to decrease further. Rooftop will help add to solar capacity while minimising land use.
“Rooftop solar systems have high leverage over commercial consumers as their business depends on a continuous and economic power source,” states R Chellappan, Managing Director, SWELECT Energy Systems Limited. As a corporate, industrial, commercial or residential consumer, they can generate green power by utilising existing architecture like canopy parking lot, slope or flat roof and wide terrace.
Offerings for rooftop solar projectsSurely, with large solar power projects being commissioned solar companies are looking at delivering all possible solutions/products to consumers. Every company is looking to capture the opportunities existing in the solar sector. Rooftop solar projects seem to be quiet popular with companies providing EPC solutions for these projects. 
Waaree Energies is a solar EPC company and they undertake turnkey projects. Solar rooftop projects are usually available as on-grid and off-grid, they provide both options. The company has also commissioned solar-DG hybrid projects which are preferred by industrial consumers with DG sets. They have also appointed channel partners across India which enables them to reach out to remote locations for installations.
On the other hand Welspun Renewables, are very optimistic about the future of rooftop solar. From building large scale ground mounted projects, the company has successfully constructed three rooftop projects in record time. Through cumulative 795 KW capacities, they are reducing the carbon footprint by helping to generate an estimated 1,174,000 kWh of clean energy annually. The prestigious projects have been set up to meet captive power needs of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur – 192kWp, Ansal University – 100kWp and Medanta Medicity Hospital – 500kWp. The 100 kWp Ansal university project, developed by Ansal Colonisers will help nearly 2,000 users by supplying clean energy. Approximately 1,000 faculty members and students at IIT Kanpur, through the 192 kWp plant will be using solar energy to teach and carry out their experiments. The largest among the three projects, The Medanta Medicity project is built over two extended parking lots that can house over 300 cars at a time.Rays Power Infra primarily focuses on EPC of rooftop installations for 100 KW and above. Their primarily target include health institutions, educational institutions, government buildings, industries, etc. They also have expertise in RESCO model wherein the company installs the solar power plant with their own funding and provide power to the rooftop owner. The rooftop owner gets the benefit of reliable solar power which is supplied to them at a reduced price as compared to grid electricity.
SWELECT offers a complete range of PV modules; solar power solutions ranging from simple standalone systems with power storage, rooftop systems with net metering, grid connected systems as well as MW scale SPV farms. In line with the Indian government’s latest make in India campaign, SWELECT offers modules, inverters and mounting structure, all in one package. This helps investors to buy everything under one roof and enjoy possible tax savings (for complete project inputs) as well as quality assurance.
Challenges in rooftop solar projectsThe government’s new renewable energy policy has set a 100 GW solar capacity target of which 40 GW is through rooftop solar. Solar rooftop project implementation has been a major challenge for solar companies. With absence of clear cut and uniform policies for all states solar companies are having a tough time.
Commenting on the challenges involved in rooftop solar Mr Mittal comments, “There has to be more clarity around the policies for rooftop solar. The absence of subsidies has made generation very expensive. Since storage and leakage are some of the biggest hurdles in power, development of battery technology is going to be crucial.” He further adds, “The approach of consumers also needs to change. It is now imperative that we see clean energy as an urgent need to mitigate carbon emissions and attain environmental and health sustainability.” Consumers must be educated about the advantages to attain energy efficiency and that many state governments are buying surplus power. The government should help by providing incentives for schemes, so that more people feel encouraged to adopt it. We must look at the long-term profits, rather than short term gains.
“Capex requirement is a challenge for these projects, even with government subsidies. Customers look for cheaper source of finance so that they can achieve break even in 3 year timeframe,” says Mr Doshi. He further adds, “Power storage is another challenge because the batteries are very costly and those who have evening peak demands can’t match their supply demand situation. Net metering application needs to be streamlined so that it becomes more popular.”
When asked about the challenges in rooftop solar Mr Mehta opines, “The key challenge is the reluctance of the various state discoms to acknowledge power from solar rooftop. Various state governments have come up with net metering policy but those policies are still not air tight which leaves huge implementation hurdles. This can be reduced by urging the discoms to accept rooftop solar power and providing a single window clearance for net metering policy in every state.”
The major challenge with solar rooftop projects is a lack of awareness. Mr Chellappan says, “There needs to be an understanding of how much power is consumed by the users and how it correlates with the solar system installed and the power that is produced. Consumers are not clear about the subsidies due to lack of clarity from government as the situation is yes/no always.” There is no FIT (Feed in Tariff) like in several other countries. He further states, “While exporting power (net metering) to grid in solar rooftop projects, state wise policy also varies for different consumers, like in some states power export (Net metering) is approved for residential consumers and not for industrial consumers but in some states for both residential and industrial consumers are available.” These types of policies have to be part of the state’s campaign to spread awareness on renewable energy.  Loans should also be readily available for renewable energy products.
Contributing to India’s mission of 100 GW by 2022The government’s mission to install 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022 has been very encouraging. Understanding the need for electricity, the government has set 40 GW of solar power capacity to be generated by rooftop solar projects targeting the residential/commercial sectors as well.
Speaking about the company’s contribution to 100 GW mission Mr Doshi says, “Currently we have the largest module manufacturing capacity of 500 MW in India at Surat, Gujarat. We have an experience of more than 215 MW of EPC experience and more than 150 MW of projects under construction in India and Japan. We would manufacture 2 GW of modules and commission 4 GW of projects by 2022.”
The governments focus on renewable sector has encouraged companies to invest in the sector and companies from small to large scale have started commissioning various projects across the country. Rays Power Infra having a portfolio of 100 MW has commissioned projects with 170 MW down the pipeline. “We are also working as an independent power producer in a big way. We share the enthusiasm of the government for promoting green energy and are very keen to participate in all government tenders to provide a brighter future for coming generations. Our primary target is to make India self dependent in terms of energy requirements and to reduce the carbon footprint of India,” says Mr Mehta.
SWELECT has installed over 1,700 roof top installations and plans to continue the trend in the upcoming years. As a part of the initiatives towards achieving this goal, the government has also approved net metering technology (i.e., exporting power back to the grid) in more than 20 states, with accelerated depreciation benefits. “With the future forecast of increase in PV module demand, we increased production capacity of PV Module in our manufacturing company (HHV Solar Technologies Limited) from 40 MW to 100 MW,” says Mr Chellappan.
With emphasis on solar rooftop by the government it will help reduce dependency on other sources of energy and also help us achieve the set target. “We are very confident and excited to see solar power becoming the next big contributor in India’s energy future,” states Mr Mittal. Welspun Renewables has made a green commitment of 11 GW capacity additions. The 11,001 MW capacities will be developed as 8,660 MW of solar and 2,341 MW of wind power projects. Towards this goal, in next few years Welspun Renewables will be setting up 5 GW capacities, and of this 1 GW will be commissioned well within this financial year. ____________________________Rooftop solar is one of the most efficient and cost-effective source of reducing dependency on traditional sources of energy.
Vineet Mittal, Vice Chairman, Welspun Renewables____________________________________
Solar technology is silent, modular with no moving parts which makes it a perfect solution for rooftop installation.
Hitesh Doshi, Chairman & Managing Director, WAAREE Group________________________________
The key challenge is the reluctance of the various state discoms to acknowledge power from solar rooftop.
Ketan Mehta, Director, Rays Power Infra__________________________
Rooftop solar systems have high leverage over commercial consumers as their business depends on a continuous and economic power source
R Chellappan, Managing Director, SWELECT Energy Systems

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