Solar power statistics in India show that the solar power industry has made significant progress since its inception in 1991. The industry is currently dominated by companies in polysilicon, solar cells, solar modules and solar project development.
As per the government of India’s latest estimates, about 18.4 GW of grid-connected solar power capacity has already been installed till date, with around 10 GW more online and under construction. The solar power industry had a turnover of $8 billion in 2013-14; this will touch the $17 billion mark by 2021. While the demand for solar systems has grown steadily over the years, the major cause for impressive growth can be attributed to new infrastructure projects that are being planned by the Government of India at present.
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The Solar Energy Market in India 2022
India has emerged as a global leader in solar power. As of November 30, 2022, the country had 61.97 gigawatts (GW) of installed solar capacity, placing it fourth globally for solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment. Presently, solar tariffs in India are very competitive and have achieved grid parity.
The Leading Indian Cities in Solar Energy in 2022
|Rank||State||Solar Capacity||Prominent Solar Plant|
|1||Rajasthan||16.06 GW||Bhadla Solar Park|
|2||Gujarat||8 GW||Charanka Solar Park|
|3||Karnataka||7.8 GW||Pavagada Solar Park|
|4||Tamil Nadu||6.2 GW||Kamuthi Solar Power Project|
|5||Telangana||4.6 GW||Ramagundam Floating Solar Project|
Rajasthan has the highest solar power generation potential of any state in India. As of December 2022, Rajasthan had installed roughly 16,060 MW of solar energy capacity, surpassing Karnataka as the leading state for solar installations. By 2025, Rajasthan plans to install 30,000 MW of solar energy capacity.
Gujarat recently overtook Karnataka to become the second-largest solar-producing state in India. In fact, it accounts for 25% of the country’s total rooftop capacity and 13% of its total solar capacity. The Charanka Solar Park in Patan district–which now produces 600 MW–has Gujarat’s single-largest solar power-producing capacity.
Karnataka, in India’s southwest, is the third largest producer of solar energy in India. Karnataka has a total installed solar power capacity of around 7,860 MW – not including the 1,000 MW of projects in the queue.
Tamil Nadu has the fourth-largest solar capacity in India. As of September 2022, Tamil Nadu’s total solar capacity was 6233 MW, up from 2,575 MW as of March 31, 2019.
Telangana, India’s southernmost state, ranks fifth in terms of solar power generation capacity. It also ranks second in solar energy capacity per unit area of landmass. As of September 2022, Telangana had a total installed solar energy capacity of 4637 MW. This comprised both freestanding and grid-connected rooftop solar units. The state’s total renewable energy capacity is 4919.19 MW.
Solar Growth Statistics in India 2022
In 2022, India installed 13,956 megawatts (MW) of solar and 1,847 MW of wind capacity. The majority of solar capacity was installed in the states Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Tamil Nadu. As of December 31st, the country had 120.85 GW of cumulative installed renewable energy capacity, according to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. Solar energy accounts for around 52% of the overall renewables mix, followed by wind at 35%, bio-power at 9%, and small hydro at 4%.
Main reasons behind the surge of the solar industry in India
- Increased investments in renewable energy
- Declining costs of solar energy sources
- The presence of other energy sources such as fossil fuels, biomass power, hydropower and wind power.
- Increased Government support
- Improved technology and efficiency
- Provides new jobs.
Increased investments in renewable energy in India 2022
The investment in renewable energy in India reached a record US$14.5 billion in the last financial year (FY2021-22), an increase of 125% compared to FY2020-21 and 72% over pre-pandemic FY2019-20, finds a new report by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).
Declining costs of solar energy sources
India’s solar energy sector has grown rapidly in recent years and could play a central role in achieving the country’s goal of generating 40 percent of its electricity from renewables by 2030. After a decade of innovation and cost reductions, solar energy is now the lowest-cost form of electricity generation in many locations in India (Utility-Scale Renewable Tariffs). Drivers for falling solar tariffs include declining module costs, increasing economies of scale and improvement in technology leading to higher capacity utilization factors (Bifacial solar modules and substrate changes).
Solar energy can be used to power homes and businesses in diverse ways, such as by directly decarbonizing electricity end uses in buildings, industry, and transportation through the EVs.
The presence of other energy sources
In India, coal is the largest source of energy generation, accounting for 73 percent of total electricity production. Hydroelectricity accounts for 10 percent; natural gas, 5 percent; wind power and biofuels and waste each provide 4 percent; solar power generates 2.5 percent; nuclear power accounts for 2.4 percent of total energy generation; and oil provides 0.5 percent. Currently, 22 operational nuclear reactors provide 6,780 MW of electricity to the grid; one reactor with 700 MW capacity was connected in January 2012 and ten reactors with a total capacity of 8 GW are under various stages of development. The prototype fast breeder reactor (PFBR) being implemented by Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam (BHAVINI), a completely-owned government enterprise, has a 500 MW capacity.
Increased Government support
The Government of India, Solar Energy Corporation of India Limited (SECI), and the World Bank today signed agreements for a $150 million IBRD loan, a $28 million Clean Technology Fund (CTF) loan and a $22 million CTF grant to help India increase its power generation capacity through cleaner, renewable energy sources. The agreement underscores India’s commitment to achieve 500 giga-watts (GW) of renewable energy by 2030 in order to address the challenges of climate change.
The Project will help SECI increase market uptake by addressing the barriers to deploying new technologies at scale. The first solar subproject is being constructed by Battery Energy Solar Systems (BESS) in Rajnandgaon district in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh. The second subproject which will have floating solar panels is ongoing at the Getalsud reservoir in the state of Jharkhand.
The SECI will be strengthened by the project, enabling it to achieve its goal of reaching 100 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2030. The project will provide technical assistance in human resource and business planning, project monitoring, procurement, financial and contract management, environmental and social safeguards, and financial management.
Improved technology and efficiency
The Indian government’s push for solar adoption, coupled with recent innovations in solar technology, has led to solar playing a pivotal role in meeting the country’s energy demand. The amount of sunshine that strikes the Earth exceeds the world’s total energy needs, and in recent years there have been several innovations led by emerging technologies around panels, inverters, batteries and control systems that help automate the process of plant monitoring.
Half-cell technology is a method of splitting a solar cell into two smaller ones. This increases the amount of cells in an array, thereby reducing resistance to the flow of electrons. A 60-cell module with 120 half cells has half the resistance as an array containing 240 full cells. This leads to greater efficiency and decreased problems related to low lighting conditions. Because they are less prone to micro-cracks and high heat conditions, half cells also perform better in these scenarios.
Building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) could easily contribute to the generation of solar energy in cities where the skylines are filled with skyscrapers. The versatility of PV glass is perfect for letting daylight enter a building while producing energy. Customized panels that can be fitted into architectural features, such as canopies and terraces, can increase the use of solar energy.
Floating PV panels offer a number of advantages over traditional ground-mounted PV modules. By generating power while freeing up valuable real estate, they can be used to generate solar energy on bodies of water such as lakes, reservoirs and ponds. In recent years, floating renewable energy projects have been established around the world. For example, a fully operational 48-acre floating solar plant was recently set up on a large water reservoir in Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu. In Andhra Pradesh, a floating solar project is set to be installed under the Flexibilisation Scheme.
Microinverters are a recent technological advancement in solar system design. They are more efficient and safer than the older string inverters. Unlike a string inverter, which has many panels connected to it, a microinverter is connected behind every panel. This ensures that there is no high voltage running through the system, as AC-DC conversion happens at the panel level, protecting homes and their occupants. Microinverters function at 96.5% efficiency–if one stops working, the other microinverters continue to operate without complete power loss.
Solar batteries are an increasingly popular source of renewable energy. They enable users to store solar power and use that energy even when the sun goes down. Depending on the size of their batteries, people can power anything from a house to a wide range of appliances. Some of the key advantages of using solar batteries are reduced carbon footprint, greater energy independence and longer lifespan. One recent development has been the switch from lead-acid batteries to lithium-ion batteries, which offer greater safety and lighter weight than their predecessors.
As technology advances, solar systems now come with their own monitoring system that customers can access through an app or the web. The app provides insights on each device’s functioning, power generation, and usage to create a smart, energy-efficient solar system. This will also allow service providers remote access to the solar system and reduce site visits.
The Economic Index of the Solar Industry in India in 2021
The Indian government has imposed a 40% import tariff on all modules and 25% on all cells from April 2022. It replaced the 15% protective tariff imposed on PV imports from China and Malaysia in April 2018. The government expects the Production Related Incentive Scheme (PLI) to create 30,000 direct jobs and 120,000 indirect jobs by encouraging domestic manufacturing of high-efficiency modules.
In 2021, India used 57% of cell production capacity (4.1 GW electricity from 7.2 GW capacity) and only 38% of module capacity (4.5 GW electricity from 11.7 GW capacity). Due to cheap imports from China, only a fraction of the current solar capacity is operating in India.
India’s grid-connected solar sector will add 137,000 jobs in 2021, up 47% from 2020. About 80,000 people are working in the off-grid solar industry, which has recovered from the impact of his COVID-19 over the past few years. In India’s wind energy industry, 1.5GW of added capacity in 2021 is a slight improvement over 2020 but installations continue at a slower pace. Employment in the Indian wind sector will reach 35,400 in 2021 with almost half of them in operations and maintenance jobs.
IRENA estimates that the combined wind and solar workforce in 2021 will be 111,400, including 43,000 in rooftop solar, 42,900 in utility-scale solar and 25,500 in wind. This estimate is lower than IRENA’s and excludes indirect jobs, off-grid solar applications and equipment manufacturing.
About 49,900 were employed in construction and commissioning; 41,100 in his O&M (operations and maintenance) and 20,400 in commercial development and construction. The ongoing COVID-19 disruption has reduced new renewable energy job creation from 12,400 in FY 2019 to 5,200 in FY 2020 and 6,400 in FY 2021.
India’s target of deploying 500 GW of non-fossil energy sources by 2030 will create 3.4 million new job opportunities (short and long term), or about 1 million direct full-time equivalent opportunities. Most will be localized deployments of distributed renewable energy technologies.
The solar industry in India has been growing considerably at a rate of more than 25% per annum. The global solar energy market is experiencing competition as a result of declining cost of solar panels and renewable energy sources. This article used a screen recorder for reporting, highlighting the global scenario of solar power which was an alternative option to deal with the energy crisis in India, how it fared and how India can benefit from it. It also highlights some key factors that would help in its adoption on a faster scale.
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