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Commissioning of India’s Largest Monopole Transmission Line by Bajaj Electricals Limited

Nov 25, 2021

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Headquartered in Mumbai, the highly lauded Bajaj Electricals Limited (BEL) is one of the companies of the Indian multinational conglomerates in the business of Power Transmission & Distribution. We are the undisputed leader in Monopole in India, having more than a decade of experience in design, manufacturing and execution. Monopoles in BEL are manufactured Indigenously at BEL Pune Plant, out of which many are successfully type tested at CPRI, Bangalore & SERC Chennai testbeds.

About the Project

BEL energized a Landmark 400kV D/C transmission line project from Sector 148 to Sector 123 in Feb’ 2020, India’s Longest and Largest 400kV Transmission line on Monopoles sprawling on a stretch of around 20 km in Noida, which is a remarkable achievement. In India, BEL is leading the way in Monopole transmission lines and has accomplished this project even after facing a maze of hurdles like Densely populated areas, Green belt zones and other narrow wayleaves.

This crucial energy project was the key for sustainable development in the NCR Region, and this project also demonstrates the close partnership between Urban development and State utilities. The distribution scheme enabled access to electricity to many households & Industrial sectors in the Noida Extension region.

Enter Bajaj Electricals Limited

Initially, the said power transfer was proposed on 400 kV cables due to the unavailability of required space for installation of 400kV lattice towers and related foundation (around 14m x 14m space per lattice structure was required) work along the corridor of line within a budget of INR 800 crore.

After surveying the proposed transmission line route & analysing site constraints, BEL conveyed the feasibility for the construction of a 400kV transmission line on monopoles to the Noida Authority. Moreover, a smaller footprint is required for installation of monopoles (3.5 m x 3.5 m per monopole), and the same would be a highly cost-effective option (Approx INR 150 Cr. including land acquisition and RoW expenses) considering land requirements in highly populated and expensive cities such as Noida and other.

Based on the feasibility plan submitted by BEL, the Noida authority agreed and funded M/s. U.P. Rajkiya Nirman Nigam Limited (UPRNNL), a company responsible for executing the construction work, awarded by the Government, semi Government and other Undertakings in the form of deposit works. 

Further, M/s. UPRNNL floated the tender for the construction of said transmission line. A total of five bidders participated in the tendering process & during evaluation, BEL was found to be competent and most competitive of all the bidders. This project was then transferred from M/s. UPRNNL to M/s. Uttar Pradesh Power Transmission Corporation Ltd (UPPTCL), a company responsible for electricity transmission within the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh & requested them to construct the said transmission line. The purchase order was then awarded to BEL by M/s. UPPTCL. Thus, the journey towards the construction of an overhead transmission line on monopoles began.

Project Challenges

BEL started the foundation and erection work for the monopole transmission line from the most critical portion of the line as per instruction of M/s. UPPTCL and Noida Authority. This was to check for the actual feasibility of monopoles at the site, and the same was found to be the best-fit optimum solution for the problem considering all the site constraints.

However, the project met some challenges. The following challenges were mitigated collaboratively by BEL and other authorities;

⮚  Forest approval - 815 meters of the transmission line was falling under the Mubarakpur forest block. The forest department's working/ construction approval was delayed from the client's end, which eventually delayed the commissioning of said line. BEL's engineering prowess ensured that no trees were harmed during the construction of said transmission line through the forest by spotting monopoles at available space, increasing the height of monopoles by 5 meters & doing manual erection activity.

Approval from the irrigation department – As most of the line was proposed parallel to the Hindon river, The Irrigation Department objected to land excavation over 5m depth as it would reduce the mother soil compaction and weaken the mother soil of the Pusta near the river boundary. To strengthen the soil & resolve this issue, the irrigation department suggested placing boulders in the nearby vicinity of Pusta. Thus, boulders were installed later to stabilize soil and eliminate any imminent risk of collapsing Pusta.

Limited erection space - At the crossing of 220kV Pali to Sector 148 line, the space available for monopole installation via crane was significantly less. The monopole here was erected partly using a lower capacity crane section-by-section. Before that, BEL used to assemble the entire monopole at the ground and erect a suitable capacity crane.

⮚ This line was constructed amid heavy city traffic, Surveying & avoiding underground Utilities such as Cables/ Gas Pipelines/ Water Pipelines etc. 

Notable Project Highlights

➢India's Longest 400 kV Monopole transmission line of 20 km.

➢94 nos. 400kV D/C monopoles were manufactured in-house at the Ranjangaon unit and were installed at the site by BEL.

➢Said Transmission line was successfully commissioned on Feb' 2020 and the same is in successful operation till date.

➢ BEL has always dealt with Safety & SHE Compliances with utmost priority, which is why this line had Zero Safety incidents.

➢ Pier foundation was introduced for the first time in India for transmission line structure.

➢No trees were cut for the construction of the said line. The forest ecosystem was fully conserved (A total of 815 m line length passed through the forest).

➢The company also pulled off the project by utilizing one-fourth of the land compared to the conventional lattice structure overhead transmission lines.

BEL is currently working on a similar 400 kV transmission line project on monopoles for M/s. PGCIL in Noida.

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