IBC SOLAR Projects Private Ltd., Indian subsidiary of the German IBC SOLAR AG, has signed an operation and maintenance (O&M) contract for the recently installed photovoltaic (PV) plant in Bhadla, in the Indian state of Rajasthan.
IBC SOLAR, which has implemented the 5.5 megawatt peak project under contract from a local investor, will be responsible for the smooth operation of the PV plant to achieve high energy yields, value preservation and optimal safety for the next ten years. The service will be ensured through a real-time monitoring as well as through trained staff directly stationed in Bhadla.
Grid-connected in August 2014, the Bhadla PV plant marks the first megawatt project in India that IBC SOLAR and its Indian subsidiary realised as full-service EPC contractor (engineering, procurement, construction). As the solar park is located in the middle of the desert, the O&M contract also covers regular inspections, preventive maintenance actions a regular cleaning of the modules. According to a study realised in 2013 by a master student on behalf of IBC SOLAR, modules located in desert regions with extreme climatic conditions should be cleaned two to three times a month to ensure best performance results.
In India, it is not yet a common practice that the EPC contractor installs the PV plant and, in addition, also provides the technical operation management. However, this option should definitely be taken into consideration by investors. “As a full-service EPC contractor, we always recommend that investors not only focus on short-term profits, but also keep their mind at generating long-term ROI (Return on Invest). This definitely includes ensuring the long-term performance of the plant under extreme climatic conditions. Only plants that continuously show best results will deliver the desired yields and profitability to the investor,” said Reinhard Ling, Managing Director at IBC SOLAR Projects Private Ltd. in Mumbai.
IBC SOLAR offers continuous supervision and evaluation of the Bhadla plant to identify abnormalities and be able to quickly respond to potential errors at any time. “We rely on trained local staff who are working directly on site, and therefore are able to re-establish the system without notable outages,” concludes Reinhard Ling.
Since 2004, IBC SOLAR has a specialised O&M team, certified as “Authorised Experts for Photovoltaic Equipment” by the TÜV Rheinland in 2014. To date, IBC SOLAR is the contracted O&M service provider for approximately 200 MW in more than 90 PV power plants.
Its standard service package includes plant monitoring, troubleshooting support and preventive maintenance service as well as maintenance of green areas and reporting. Upon customer request, IBC SOLAR also provides a performance guarantee for the complete PV system. With extensive expertise along the entire value chain, IBC SOLAR can ensures maximum performance ratio of PV installations, thus giving customers peace of mind. For projects that require more than the standard services, IBC SOLAR offers extra services such as technical upgrading and retrofitting, eliminating malfunctions that are not covered by the initial contract, and thermographic inspections.