1. The Ghoramara microgrid

Ghoramara is an island located approximately 92 km south of Kolkata, in the Sundarban of the Bay of Bengal, with non-existing utility grid and no access to electricity. The habitants live in very poor and difficult conditions, while the island suffers from severe cyclonic storms. The Ghoramara microgrid will provide electric power to 1100 houses in the area.

The Ghoramara microgrid is developed within the RE-EMPOWERED project, funded in the framework of European-Indian collaboration and coordinated by the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) and the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT KGP). The installations include a 160 kW microgrid system (150 kW PV + 10 kW wind + 720 kWh BESS) with commercial technologies, a 10 kW advanced microgrid (7.5 kW PV + 2.5 kW wind + 50 kWh BESS) with RE-EMPOWERED developed technologies and a charging station with three 3.3 kW ports (two for electric three wheelers and one for e-boat). Resilient, robust structures able to withstand very strong winds have been designed for the renewable sources plants.

The installations are coordinated by IIT KGP. Advanced technologies have been developed by IIT KGP (power electronic converters), by CSIR-(CMERI) Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (renewables resilient structures) and by VNIT – Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur (charging station) . On the 2 nd February 2024, the European partners from NTUA, DAFNI and Imperial College visited Ghoramara and had the opportunity to see the first phase of the installation. The first 650 families are expected to be electrified this month. Our Indian partners have to be commented for an exceptional job! In the next phase technologies developed by the European partners will be deployed including advanced optimization and demand side management tools.

2. Keonjhar, India

Ranipada is a small village in Harichandanpur, Keonjhar District, Odisha State, India. The total population of the village is 350 people, the main source of income for the community is agriculture, primarily rice cultivation. The village is not connected to the main utility grid, however a solar PV plant of 22 kWp is installed by the government of Odisha, supplying 100 W of power to each house to cater basic facilities.

Within the RE-EMPOWERED project, funded in the framework of European-Indian collaboration and coordinated by the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) and the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT KGP) a new 50 kW microgrid is being installed. The microgrid comprises a 30 kWp PV system, a 180 kWh Battery System, a 10 kW biomass plant and a 10 kW biogas system. The installation of the new microgrid primarily aims to augment the overall generation capacity to not only meet household demand, but also to encourage the utilization of energy for income- generating purposes in agriculture and small businesses. Ultimately, this initiative aims to reduce rural-to-urban migration. Furthermore, in support of businesses and agriculture, electric vehicles are also supplied for transportation to sustain the supply chain.

On the 4 th February 2024 the European partners from NTUA, DAFNI and Imperial College traveled to Keonjhar, visited the microgrid installations, met the people of the village and participated in the general meting of the formed energy community. They had the chance to discuss about various issues related to the maintenance and sustainability of the system. The installations at Keonjhar have been implemented and coordinated by the Indian Institute of Technology Bhubaneswar (IIT BBS). Moreover, advanced meters have been developed by CSIR- Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (CMERI), while CMERI in collaboration with the Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur (VNIT) have customized three-wheelers to be supplied by commercial EV chargers. Our Indian partners have to be commented for an excellent job! In the next phase technologies developed by the European partners will be deployed including advanced optimization and demand side management tools

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