Tata BP Solar targets 180 mw by December
Tata BP Solar India Ltd, a joint venture between Tata Power
and BP Solar, has targeted to attain a total of 180 mw of solar cell capacity at
its Bangalore facility by end-2008, a company spokesperson told Projectmonitor.
The joint venture recently signed an agreement with Calyon Credit Agricole CIB (Calyon
Bank) to raise Rs 310 crore to part-finance the expansion project. With a
capacity of 52 mw already in place, the expansion project entails setting up 128
mw of new capacity, the official explained.
The joint venture inaugurated its Bangalore facility in March last year.
Operations began with 32 mw of solar cell capacity that has now risen to 52 mw.
The eventual target is to attain 300 mw of cell capacity by 2010, the official
added. The total investment by 2010 will be an estimated $300 million (Rs 1,200
Meanwhile, Tata BP Solar has also increased its solar module capacity from the
current 85 mw. Work is under way to attain a total module capacity of 125 mw by
end of this year.
Tata BP Solar delivers products and solutions that serve both the Indian and
global markets, earning substantial foreign exchange earnings for India while
also increasing product supply locally. The company has estimated that India's
growing solar market currently consumes about 1 per cent of the world's
The Indian solar cell market appears buoyant with a large number of investment
intentions. Earlier in the month, US-based Signet Solar announced its plans to
invest Rs 2,000 crore over a five-year period. Domestic companies like XL
Telecom & Energy have also invested substantially in capacity expansion, to meet
local and global demand.
Thanks to an incentive scheme for grid-connected solar power plants announced in
January this year, the Centre expects an investment of Rs 1,000 crore to flow
into the solar power industry. The incentive scheme that will be based on power
generation is expected to offset high cost of solar power installations. Besides
providing incentives, the scheme will also ensure that the country will have
large installations, of at least 1 mw, that are commercially much more viable.
India's total solar power capacity is around 125 mw which comes from around 1.45
million installations of solar-photovoltaic cells and solar-thermal power
plants. These comprise small installations ranging from 25 kW to a maximum of
200 kW. The grid-interactive solar power capacity is, however, only 2.9 mw. The
new incentive scheme, if fully taken up, can technically result in 50 mw of new
grid-interactive solar power capacity that could significantly transform the
[March 31- April 6, 2008]