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Home » Industry Analysis » Arrival of energy-efficient and sustainable switchgear solutions

Arrival of energy-efficient and sustainable switchgear solutions

April 27, 2024 11:29 am

Arrival of energy-efficient and sustainable switchgear solutions
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Explore India’s burgeoning switchgear industry, fueled by innovation, sustainability, and government initiatives. Dive into market dynamics, challenges, and solutions with industry leaders paving the way for electrical infrastructure advancement.

The need for dependable, efficient, and safe electrical power systems has driven significant advancements in the switchgear sector. Experts discuss vital technical advancements, challenges faced, the growth of the switchgear industry in India, strategies for entering new markets, product specifications, and sustainability efforts. These developments enhance protection and user safety while expanding electrical infrastructure by prioritising higher standards, maintenance, and advanced control systems. Industry leaders analyse the efficiency of switchgear in this context.

Factors propelling growth in India’s switchgear Market

India’s switchgear market is experiencing rapid growth, driven by increasing demand for reliable, efficient, and safe electrical power systems. Key factors fueling this expansion include notable technical advancements, market challenges, and sustainability initiatives. Industry experts analyse strategies for market penetration, product specifications, and the importance of maintenance and advanced control systems.

In a discussion with EPR magazine, Aneesh Thomas, Global Product Manager, Lucy Electric India, said, “Rapid urbanisation in India is driving the growth of the switchgear market, driven by government initiatives like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Smart Cities Mission’. This growth is fueled by increased power demand and a focus on renewable energy, leading to opportunities in smart grid technologies, electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and global market exports.”

Latish Babu, Director of Power & Grid, Schneider Electric,  says, “The switchgear market in India is thriving due to rapid urbanisation, infrastructure development, and renewable energy adoption. Government initiatives and smart grid implementation drive market growth, offering compact, energy-efficient, and digitally integrated switchgear solutions across various industrial sectors.

Piyush Garg, Director of Balaji Switchgears, said, “India’s initiatives like Make in India, NEMMP, PM KUSUM, and The Smart City Mission aim to boost the switchgear industry and support electrical equipment manufacturing. These initiatives enhance electricity access in remote areas and transform traditional agriculture into modern polyhouse greenhouse farming. India’s push towards electric vehicles supports fuel conservation and the environment. 

“Environmental factors and economic growth in India are driving the growth of the switchgear market.  Infrastructure and real estate investments, government initiatives like Make in India, and a shift towards renewable energy sources drive demand for advanced switchgear solutions. This market is expected to continue expanding in India.” Piyush further said.

Aneesh emphasised that India’s switchgear market is expanding rapidly due to government efforts, industrialisation, and urbanisation. The sector is well-positioned to influence India’s electrified future due to the country’s high demand for cutting-edge electrical solutions and emphasis on sustainability. It can navigate the intricacies of the energy landscape with a dedication to innovation, efficiency, and environmental care. The switchgear market embraces digitalisation and sustainability trends. The switchgear industry in India is undergoing significant changes due to technological advancements, market demands, and regulatory requirements. Firms are utilising various strategies to capitalise on emerging opportunities. Despite challenges like environmental compliance and technical intricacies, the market presents significant prospects for innovation and sustainability.

“The switchgear industry in India is integrating digitalisation and smart grid solutions for efficient monitoring. Safety features like arc-flash detection and eco-friendly materials enhance safety and environmental sustainability. IoT-enabled remote monitoring allows real-time performance tracking and predictive maintenance, optimising space and reducing costs.” Aneesh added.

In continuing on the topic, Latish emphasised, “Switchgear systems are utilising IoT integration for real-time analytics and predictive maintenance, enhancing operational efficiency and reliability. These systems utilise sustainable materials, rapid arc-fault detection, and advanced interlocks to minimise electrical hazards and ensure eco-friendly options.”

“TeSys Island for load management in industries. This digital solution improves machine performance and reliability and is compatible with Industry 4.0. It reduces operating time and provides remote access for predictive maintenance when integrated with the EcoStruxure Machine. Successful in sectors including food and beverage, material handling, and packaging, TeSys Island is compatible with major automation field buses, such as Siemens and Rockwell.” Piyush added.

“The development of smart grid projects and India’s industrial expansion have accelerated switchgear technology improvements. Power outages have decreased, and grid stability has increased due to the nation’s focus on smart grid development through initiatives like the National Smart Metering Programme. Solid-state circuit breakers and SCADA integration are two examples of enhanced monitoring, control, and communication features that modern switchgear offers, enhancing low-voltage switchgear for more robust power infrastructure,” Vivek highlighted.

The switchgear market in India is undergoing a significant transformation, driven by a shift towards digitalisation, sustainability, and safety.  The switchgear sector integrates smart grid solutions, IoT technologies, and eco-friendly materials for improved efficiency.

 Decoding challenges in India’s switchgear sector

This analysis explores the complexities within India’s Switchgear Sector and delves into the various challenges faced by the industry. From technological hurdles to market demands, we uncover the key obstacles hindering progress and growth in this critical sector of the Indian economy.

 The very first opinion on challenges put by Aneesh Thomas, he said, “India’s renewable energy industry faces safety compliance and environmental concerns, necessitating collaboration among manufacturers, policymakers, and regulatory bodies to address infrastructure investment, regulatory uncertainty, supply chain disruptions, and ageing infrastructure in the medium-voltage switchgear industry.”

“Switchgear systems, crucial for ensuring optimal performance and longevity, are increasingly integrated with digital technologies and robust cybersecurity, requiring specialised expertise and substantial investment. However, adhering to environmental regulations and phasing out SF6 gas insulation poses challenges for end-users and service providers.” Latish explained it.

“The switchgear infrastructure is nearing the end of its operational life, necessitating extensive maintenance, refurbishment, or replacement to ensure reliability and safety. Cyber threats like hacking, malware, and data breaches pose a threat. Integrating new technology switchgear in an ageing infrastructure may lead to compatibility issues and extensive testing and validation.” Piyush described.

“Switchgear systems pose barriers due to high costs, ongoing maintenance, and regulatory changes. These costs can be overwhelming, particularly for utility companies with tight budgets. The outdated infrastructure and lack of uniform regional regulations further complicate modernisation efforts. A coordinated approach is needed to standardise safety and performance, ensuring the adoption of advanced switchgear technologies.” Vivek further said.

India’s switchgear sector faces diverse challenges, including safety compliance, environmental concerns, and ageing infrastructure. Collaboration among stakeholders is essential to address these issues and drive progress in the industry.

Industry insights and solutions

To effectively enter the market, industry players in the switchgear sector prioritise customer-centric services, sustainable practices, and innovative product development. The switchgear sector is undergoing growth and change due to these firms’ alliances, service expansion, and emphasis on global standards. Businesses that are leading the way in terms of quality, innovation, and environmental responsibility

 “Switchgear industry players focus on product innovation, partnerships, and service expansion to penetrate the market effectively. Sustainable practices, comprehensive training, and digital marketing platforms are key strategies. Priorities include eco-friendly materials, SF6 gas reduction, energy-efficient design, compliance with environmental regulations, component recyclability, and reducing carbon footprint throughout the product lifecycle.” The solution started with Latish’s thoughts.

Piyush contributed to the discussion by asserting, “A key figure at Balaji Switchgears emphasises the company’s comprehensive support services, focusing on long-term customer service excellence and adapting to dynamic work environments. Balaji Switchgears offers over 4000+ LV products, with a skilled workforce working closely with customers to ensure timely problem-solving and smooth project completion. BSPL plans to launch e-waste disposal schemes to help customers reduce their carbon footprint responsibly. Balaji Switchgears’ commitment to customer satisfaction is evident in their commitment to quality and innovation.”

Vivek echoed this by adding, “Havells is a leading switchgear company that focuses on early trends and provides innovative solutions, such as PRCD plugs for EVs. They collaborate with industry stakeholders to meet diverse needs and promote proper handling. By expanding into international markets and focusing on export-oriented growth, Havells enhances global visibility and adherence to standards like RoHS and REACH. Their energy-efficient switchgear designs lower operational costs and environmental impact, setting industry benchmarks and promoting environmental stewardship while meeting customer needs.” 

The switchgear industry in India has experienced significant growth due to technological advancements and market growth initiatives. Despite challenges like regulatory uncertainty and environmental concerns, opportunities arise from rapid urbanisation, government support, and renewable energy integration. Sustainable design strategies and proactive market approaches are crucial for industry players to meet customer needs and environmental standards.

Quotes:

Aneesh Thomas, Global Product Manager, Lucy Electric India

“India’s medium-voltage switchgear industry is at the forefront of innovation, integrating digitalisation and smart grid solutions for efficient monitoring and automation while addressing challenges.”

Latish Babu, Director, Power & Grid, Schneider Electric

“Innovative digital integration and IoT in switchgear systems optimise efficiency and safety, meeting sustainability challenges and driving growth in India’s dynamic market.”

 Piyush Garg, Director, Balaji Switchgears 

“Our commitment lies in providing comprehensive solutions empowering clients to build reliable electrical systems, including Industry 4.0-compliant load management solutions.”

 Vivek Yadav, Executive Vice President, Havells India

“India’s switchgear sector advances with smart grid focus but faces regulatory challenges and high costs.”

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