NTDC fails to upgrade transmission system2 min read

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LAHORE: The National Trans­mission and Despatch Company (NTDC) has allegedly failed to upgrade its 220/500kV grids and transmission system that continues to disrupt the 132/kV distribution network affecting smooth electricity supply to the consumers.

Though the NTDC had planned to upgrade the system before the summer, it couldn’t accomplish the task due to various technical and administrative reasons.

“Three transformers — each with a capacity of 450MVA — are installed at Rawat. Since this grid was facing overloading, we planned to add a 750MVA transformer before the start of summer. But, a foreign company delayed manufacturing it. However, we later received the transformer in July from the manufacturer and started civil work, which is under way and is likely to be completed along with its installation maximum by November,” an official source in the Power Division told Dawn.

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“As the new transformer will share the load of the grid with the three installed already, the overloading issue will end providing relief to consumers in service areas of some major power distribution companies (Discos), including Islamabad Electric Supply Company (Iesco) and Gujranwala Electric Power Company (Gepco).”

Also Read: NTDC short of funds to upgrade for smooth power supply

At present, the NTDC’s 220kV and 500kV systems continue to be overloaded, affecting the power supply and distribution in the service areas of Iesco, Gepco, Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (Fesco) and Lahore Electric Supply Company (Lesco). In such a situation, the Discos are left with no option but to shed the load in rural areas or those falling within the service jurisdiction 11kV high loss feeders in a bid to save the 220/500kV system from any collapse, tripping etc.

Besides Rawat, 500kV Gatti (Faisalabad) grid station needs addition of some new transformers. It continues to be disturbed due to overloading, creating problems for Fesco directly and Lesco indirectly. At present, Gatti has three 450MVA transformers that are insufficient to absorb/bear the current load especially in peak hours.

“Here the NTDC is going to add a 600MVA transformer for which the company would require three to four months,” claimed the official. And since Gatti station’s overloading also affected Sheikhu­pura’s 500kV grid, which fed Lahore from the north, leads to disturbance on distribution system. “Therefore, after getting another transformer, Gatti will also provide relief to various service areas of Lesco,” he added.

He said the company is facing various issues right from delay in land acquisition for new projects and procurement, receipt and installation of important equipment at various hot spots of its transmission system. Although it upgraded its system, the company needs to do more for which it requires sufficient resources.

(This news/article originally appeared in DAWN on September 6th, 2018)

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