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Case Study - Generator Step Up Transformer
(Gsu) Configuration

Fatimajabeen A S

D Geethalakshmi

Generator step-up transformers (GSUs) are the essential element of a power plant (thermal, nuclear, hydro and gas based). They are the critical link between the generating station and the transmission network. GSUs step-up the generating voltage level to the required evacuating transmission voltage level.

GSU being one of the expensive and critical electrical equipment in the power plant, selection of rating and configuration of GSUs is of paramount importance. In case of gas turbine based power plants, output of the gas turbine varies with the change in the site ambient temperature. Hence, GSU rating will be selected to fully evacuate the gas turbine output at site ambient temperatures from minimum to maximum.

In Indian power industry, the most widely followed configuration for combined cycle plants is having dedicated generator transformer with two windings for each GTG and STG. This is a proven design and a default configuration adopted in most of the combined cycle power plants. Reliability in this configuration is higher as dedicated transformers are provided for each gas turbines and steam turbine generators. Failure of single transformer will result in outage of only that particular unit.

However, this scheme requires transformers equal to the number of generators i.e. for 2GTGs + 1STG plant, three (3) numbers of GSUs are to be provided for transmitting the generated power & three (3) numbers of switchyard bays are required for connecting these three GSUs.

TCE, in one of the projects, carried out GSU configuration study and suggested an alternate optimised GSU configuration scheme. With the advance technologies being implemented in the transformer industry, failure rate of transformers has reduced considerably. Considering this fact and also the huge capital cost involved in the GSUs, following alternate scheme was arrived at.

One number of three-winding GSU for GTG-1 & STG and one number of two winding GSU for GTG-2 were adopted instead of conventional configuration with two winding transformers.

This configuration has following benefits

Cost optimisation due to reduced number of GSUs & switchyard bays ( 2 against the 3 as per conventional design)

Space optimisation due to reduced number of GSUs & switchyard bays

Operation and Maintenance ease as the number GSU and switchyard equipment are reduced

Above discussed configuration was suggested after a thorough study critically examining the reliability and availability of GSUs. TCE with its expertise and experience could perform these type of studies and propose the most optimal solution for the GSU configuration for combined cycle power plants.


Case Study - Tie Line Between Gas Insulated Substations Located 2.5km Apart

By Sheela Johnson


This case study elaborates various Options & Alternatives considered in techno-commercial evaluation, for construction of a tie line between two Gas Insulated Substations (GIS) of power generating plants that are 2.5kM apart. The power generating plants, are already commissioned and are in operation. Each generating plant has independant startup power from grid, however a tie line was required for ensuring reliability of startup power. Typically, Tie-lines are provided for sharing and transfering power between substations. Establishing a Tie-Line between two Extra High Voltage (EHV) ,Gas Insulated Substations(GIS) required careful study of many electrical parameters, which have direct bearing on its design and cost. For arriving at the rating of the tie line, load flow studies were conducted and startup power requirements were computed.

Tie line had to be constructed with no discontinuity of service of existing substations, overhead power lines and generating plants. The approach to site, construction facilities and accessibility required for implementing the Tie line were studied.

A techno- commercial evaluation of various options that were studied for establishing the tie line are discussed below:

Option -1:- Gas-insulated transmission lines/ bus duct (GIL/GIBD) solution for high power interconnections

Gas Insulated Transmission technology was evaluated, since the right of way (ROW) required is less when compared to overhead lines. For a rated current, GIL with SF6 gas insulation will require lesser space and is suitable in restricted areas. However due to restrictions in routing of GIL in an existing operational plant due to interferences with foundations of existing structures, crossing of roads, tunnels and trenches, this option was ruled out. Also this option was not cost-effective.

Option -2 Overhead line (OHL) with Lattice or Monopole Towers

The conventional Overhead line (OHL) built on lattice type structure is proven and universally adopted method of power evacuation or tie line connection between the units. Generally in generating stations power line connections to switchyard are by OHL within the plant area. This is basically because of easy erection, maintenance, routing & cost effectiveness. The most common problem with OHL was due to right of way (ROW) and corridor width issue. Conventional Overhead line (OHL) built on lattice type structure and monopole were compared in this option. Locating towers within an operational plant by avoiding crossing of existing EHV lines which were already charged, was the most challenging task. Tower Spotting study was carried out taking into account various configuration of line, line types, height, top hamper width, length of insulator assembly, minimum clearances, etc. Site survey was conducted to identify feasible routes and to collect data on existing facilities.

Monopole type towers were also studied as it required lesser right of way when compared to lattice type towers. Seismic Analysis was carried out for comparison of base shear & base moment for wind & seismic loads acting on monopole/ lattice type towers. However locating monopole towers in restricted areas was not feasible due to its large foundation requirements and interference with existing structure/building foundations.

By selecting line conductors based on the standard sizes used by utilities, the current carrying capacities, voltage, loading limits and impedances were optimized. Prevailing new technologies of insulator for the required basic insulation level of transmission line was studied.

Sag Tension studies were performed to achieve optimum conductor tension and sag. The most optimum span was arrived at by using software.

Option-3 Buried EHV cable

Buried cable option was studied for the route where the Tie line was crossing existing 400kV line. It was observed that cable option was economical since the tower heights required for crossing existing OH lines was very high.

The sizing of EHV cable for both Aluminium and Copper conductors was performed considering loss factors, earthing methods, installation methods etc. Suitability checks of existing GIS termination for terminating cables were also carried out.

Alternative routes that were studied for establishing the tie line are discussed below:

Alternative -1
In this alternative, routing of Tie line was planned to avoid crossing of existing 400kV power lines evacuating power from operational units. The route available was through the gap between two buildings, which would avoid shut down of power lines. However, the clearance was not adequate to construct either lattice structure or monopole tower OH line. In this alternative routing of tie line using cable was also studied. The route length of buried cable in this alternative was high and therefore this alternative was not selected.

Alternative -2
The route planned was along the boundary wall of the site, away from the both the substations. In this route crossing of 400kV existing power lines could not be eliminated. For crossing existing lines a strung bus above existing lines was studied. The study involved detailed calculation of Sag Tension for constructing the tie line with a strung bus above the existing 400kV lines. This alternative was discarded due to substantial increase in height of towers and due to the necessity for outage of existing lines.

Alternative -3
Similar to Alternative 2 the route planned was along the boundary wall of the site away from both substations. However in this route crossing of 400kV existing power lines was with a strung bus below existing 400kV lines. In this alternative the outage of existing lines could be avoided & height of towers was less. However due to long route length, constructability issues because of rough terrain and inaccessibility, this alternative was not economically feasible.

For reducing the number of towers it was decided to route the Tie line closer to both substations. In this alternative, for crossing of 400kV lines it was decided to go with underground cable whereby outage of the existing line was not required. Accessibility of existing site roads and constructability was easy in this case since the route was within the plant. With a combination of overhead transmission line & buried cable installed for crossing existing OH lines this alternative was best suited and was selected.

Based on detailed techno-commercial evaluation carried out for different options and alternate routes, it was observed that routing of the tie line with a combination of overhead line and buried cable closer to substations without resorting to outage of existing lines would be most economical solution.

TCE has significant experience in offering engineering and project management services for constructing tie lines. TCE can conduct all studies required to provide a comprehensive solution from survey, design, installation and to commissioning of Tie Lines.


Retrofitting of existing control building for increased blast pressure – Case Study

By Satish Diwakar

In a petrochemical plant, control building is a critical structure and normally located beyond the safe distance from the likely source of explosions. In case such safe distance is not possible to maintain, the control building is designed as ‘blast resistant’ structure in order to protect the plant control system. The blast pressure is evaluated based on the distance between the source of blast and the control building.

TCE carried out retrofitting of an existing control building for increased blast pressure due to change in operating conditions of the plant. The building was reassessed on “as-is” basis for structural adequacy for the increased blast pressure. Strengthening measures were proposed factoring the site constraint of “no shut down” to achieve the structural integrity & safety with minimum time and cost.

A. Introduction

TCE carried out strengthening of the existing control building of a petrochemical plant. The strengthening was necessary due to change of operating conditions of the plant resulting in increase in the design blast pressure to an extent of “8” psi.

The rectangular control building comprised of external concrete wall enclosure and concrete roof supported on steel framework. Foundation was strip footing type for walls and isolated spread footing for internal steel columns.

The major challenge in the above assignment was that the control building was not permitted to be shut down during the retrofitting work as it would have hampered the entire plant operations. Hence retrofitting work only from outside the building was conceptualised.

B. Findings of structural assessment

The control building structure was analysed for the increased blast loading and the structural adequacy was evaluated.

The results of analysis of existing structure “as-is” basis for increased blast pressure are listed below.

The external walls were found to be inadequate to withstand the out-of plane bending/shear

Roof slab which was monolithically built with concrete walls was found not safe in resisting in-plane shear and moments

The internal long structural beams did not meet the “low response” criteria and hence found to be unsafe.

Structural columns and foundations were found to be safe.

C. Retrofitting Scheme

Various options of retrofitting were evaluated qualitatively and quantitatively to minimize the extent of strengthening work, time and cost for each of the following options.

Providing structural web stiffeners (I or channel sections) with closure plate on the flange and filled with concrete on external surface of concrete wall.

Providing plate liner anchored to external surface of concrete wall

Providing external concrete jacketing

Providing concrete ribs or counter forts on the external surface of concrete wall

Since retrofitting from inside was not permitted, the options for retrofitting from inside were not considered.

D. Salient features and critical aspects of blast resistant design

Single degree of freedom (SDOF) method was adopted using in-house developed program based on chapter 7.7.1 of ASCE handbook on “Design of Blast Resistant Buildings in Petro-chemical Facilities”.

Linear time-history analysis has been performed where reflected pressure on front wall in the direction of blast, side-on pressure on side walls & roof were simultaneously applied as time-history loads. Rear wall loading is applied with a time lag. Results of this analysis were used to evaluate the bearing pressure and sliding forces. The analysis and designs were iterated for the applicable retrofitting schemes to arrive at the final solution.

In addition to the above, detailed 3-D non-linear finite element analysis was carried out to substantiate the results for appropriate retrofitting options.


Balco Medical Center, Naya Raipur, Chhattisgarh

Ar. Deepak Kamat

Opportunity, it is said knocks once, and in case of the Design of Balco Medical Center at Naya Raipur, Chhattisgarh, it was a resounding knock for the TCE Team as this presented the prospect of designing a Hospital Building in entirety, giving attention to all disciplines of the Hospital. TCE was awarded the responsibility and scope of carrying out the detailed engineering services covering architecture, structural engineering, MEP engineering and Project Management Services.

The challenges were innumerable, but not insurmountable. A linear strip of land within which to design, regulations of local bodies to be adhered to, considering the site configuration, MEP and specialised equipment requirements which demanded more attention and detailing than the architecture itself.

The client’s brief was a structure which first and foremost must relate easily to the common man, an approachable edifice, a symbol for the Clients’ vision and an aesthetically pleasing architecture. With these as guiding elements, Balco Medical Center is coming up in the newly founded capital of Chhattisgarh, Naya Raipur, on a plot of land of approximately 50 acres. This building is surrounded by land parcels with potential to develop into a thriving mass of population and activity. It is designed to include and provide the most modern modes of treatment and offer peace and solitude to patients and relatives. A 170 bedded hospital, it will house diagnostic, medical, pre and post operative care units. Naturally brightly lit corridors, triple height entrance lobby and a central court at the heart of the structure are some of the inherent design features which impart a distinctive identity to the design.

TCE team took it upon themselves to wade full-fledged into an ocean of intertwined, cross connected and yet independent requirements, each one a part of the whole. Each and the whole required a dexterity to handle and arrive at an agreeable and acceptable solution. TCE team decided very early and then proceeded with the concept of "Safety In Design" principle, for all aspects of the hospital. The practicalities and out of the box solutions were first tested on REVIT. Hours of detailing went into clash detections of all the utilities on the 3D visualization model framed from REVIT software. This reduced the dependency on arriving at solutions on site - since the problems had already been identified on the software. These models are equally advantageous when the building needs to be maintained later on.

Even in the bustle of the everyday mundane activities, the hospital would come alive with the open to sky landscaped courtyards which flood the interiors with warm daylight and keep the visitor visually connected to the outdoors. The Landscaped courts represent life, growth and hope to the disturbed. In keeping with the thought process of identifiable elements, indigenous species of trees are proposed, which will lend themselves to the region easily. These would also be easy to maintain for local labour, while reducing the dependability on externally acquired skill. Reliability on water, a valuable resource, is greatly reduced due to low irrigation demand of such species of plants. Aesthetics has not been sacrificed at the altar of economy, trees with seasonal variations in foliage would act as subdued beauty all the year round, creating an artistic backdrop for the built environment.

Colour, as an element, is always a story to be told – dull, lifeless colours would almost inevitably encourage an inert response, but a vibrant colour used in the right proportion can be invigorating – and the same is being attempted by playing with colours within the premises, encouraging the viewer to feel and respond as they come upon a colour - at a corner, at a dead end, at a sharp turn. Chhattisgarh being blessed with a cultural history, the design also attempts to weave the local features into its fabric – motifs are used in flooring patterns, ceilings and even in metal grills.

Assigning materials and finishes is a special process in hospital planning, as the finishes have to respond adequately to the varied demands they are subjected to. Areas such as ICU’s, Operation theatres, Linear accelerator rooms, PET CT rooms, Central sterile services department were equipped with conducive finishes such as epoxy paint, vinyl flooring, stainless partitions, stainless steel doors and ceilings.

With Life nowadays moving at breakneck speed and natural resources stretched to the maximum, responsible design demands measures which will reuse these to the utmost. The planning from the very onset, has been towards green certification and presently Gold LEED certification is being pursued. Rainwater and solar energy being two of the natural resources which can easily be harnessed, the design incorporates methods for the same. Harvesting of rain water for specific purposes and capturing solar energy, albeit, on a small scale, is component of the building design and process. The aspects of Sustainability has been achieved due to the right selection and correct application of material which contributed greatly to the efficiency of the structure as a whole and to the environment. Opting for sustainability factor of the material, TCE proposed use of double glazed unit for windows and curtain walls, low VOC paints, insulation at terrace floors for roofs, preference for locally manufactured elements and materials usually perceived as less fancy while at no time compromising comfort. TCE IT team has designed a reliable, secure IT infrastructure as well for the smooth functioning of a "paper-less" hospital.

Just as blood flowing through a body is evidence of its life, a similar analogy can be drawn up with the utilities of any structure. This hospital is no exception, and if one were to look at the complicated, infinite reams of pipes, cables and trays lined up to service this hospital, they stand testament to the very unique and special requirements of a hospital, as a function. The project is set for completion and is scheduled for operations sometime soon.


Mill performance improvement with Electronic Ear System

By Sujay Nandi

An Electronic Ear System is used to monitor the performance of grinding mill by measuring the mill sound. The sound generates sonic waves which may be captured by a sound sensitive device. This can be used to monitor the sound level generated by a grinding mill. With various loading depending on the feed inside the mill to be grinded, the utilization of grinding mechanism & empty space, the frequency of sound changes. This sound frequency can be used as an indication of load within the Mill. The operator can use the Electronic Ear to analyze the sound frequency spectrum and patterns, which can provide early warnings on the equipment status, e.g. warning related to the damage of costly liner or the sound trend toward an overload or under load condition which may interrupt production etc.

The microprocessor based Electronic Ear system consists of microphone and amplifier cum control unit. The microphone is to be installed as near as possible to the mill jacket. The microphone converts the sound into electrical energy and transmits it to the control unit. The control unit output of 4-20 mA signal which transmits the information on sound spectrum for inferring the loading of the mill. The control unit also generates alarms when mill noise spectrum analysis depicts operation of the mill above or below the preselected levels. These signal and alarms can be transmitted to the mill control room and can be used by operator to control the mill.

Based on the height of the grinding media inside, the mill causes a characteristic noise. In case of low material bed, there is high pitched grinding sound (i.e., high volume & high grinding sound frequency) and in case of high material bed, there is hollow grinding sound (i.e., low volume & low grinding sound frequency). This characteristic of grinding sound is used to develop an output signal proportional to the mill filling level, and can be used to control the mill feed.

The high pitched grinding sound warns an operator low material bed and impending liner damage and save cost of liner replacement and downtime. A hollow grinding sound warns the operator that the mill is potentially overloaded and production may interrupt. Advanced warning of impending problems can give the operator the opportunity to take appropriate and timely action. Maximum production and best operation are obtained at some intermediate mill load sound level.

In the present scenario the Electronic Ear System has become very essential non-contact type electronic device to help operator not only to control the performance of the mill from remote but also extends the life of the mill liner and grinding hammer / ball. Strategic locations of two or three microphones across the mill also enhance the performance and control the mill feed rate too.

TCE has recommended and implemented this system for monitoring and controlling the grinding mill performance in many projects engineered by TCE.


Root Cause Analysis of Converter Transformer Bushing Failure

Blast furnace is one of the major processes of BF-BOF (Blast Furnace - Basic Oxygen Furnace) route of steel manufacturing in an integrated steel plant. In one of the Steel plants, four (4) winding converter transformers of capacity 42/21/21/17.8 MVA, 132/5.45/5.45/11 KV were used. These transformers are connected to 132 KV Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) by cables. The transformers feed inverter (load commutated inverter) driven blower motors (Synchronous motors) each of rating 29 MW, 5.45 KV. Converter transformer winding connected to harmonic filter system is rated at 11 KV, 17.8 MVA. Resin impregnated paper insulated (RIP) bushings were used in 132 kV oil-filled cable box of the transformers. Since blast furnace is a continuous process, blower motor has to run continuously. Power interruption to blower motor affects steel plant production causing enormous financial loss.

While in operation for some time, 132 KV bushings of 2 converter transformers failed one after another within a time span of about 24 hours. One bushing in each of the two transformers got physically damaged with clear markings of insulation failure and other two bushings in each of two transformers witnessed abnormally high capacitance and tan delta value. Owner of the steel plant entrusted Tata Consulting Engineers (TCE) to carry out a thorough investigation to ascertain the root cause of bushing failures and submit a report.

TCE carried out a methodical failure analysis considering the following aspects:

Review of SOE (sequence of events) and trip records downloaded from SCADA

Questionnaires were prepared for collection of data and discussion with the manufacturer of the transformer and the Customer.

Data collection from site, site test report on transformer/bushing, data sheet of transformer/bushing were reviewed

Review of transformer manufacturer’s preliminary investigation report

Insulation co-ordination & switching surge studies were carried out specific for the 132kV connection of converter transformers.

Harmonic currents were measured at site for converter transformer which was healthy and in operation

Analysis of published research papers relevant to the subject

Review of earth mat design

Review of 132 KV GIS layout and recommended earth points by OEM

Review of GIS floor RCC construction details

A team of TCE power system experts carried out the study and investigated the following shortlisted probable causes of failure thoroughly :

Possibility of moisture ingress due to long term storage of bushings before usage

Transient over voltage during switching in absence of SA/LA nearby bushing terminals

Power frequency over voltages from downstream filter units

Very fast transient over voltage (VFTO) which may be generated either due to restrike across breaker contacts or due to very fast operation of disconnectors

After analysis, TCE submitted a report on root cause of the failure of transformer bushings. The report reveals that failure of bushings is not attributable to switching or lightning surges, as the maximum voltage surge which can appear at the bushing is well within its designed insulation level. Based on circumstantial evidences available at site, the report pointed out that the probable cause of bushing failures was due to permanent degradation of insulation due to moisture ingress over a long period of storage of bushings at site. The report has been accepted by the customer. The system has been in operation successfully for quite a long period after necessary rectification as suggested in the root cause analysis (RCA) report.

TATA Consulting Engineers (TCE) is into the business of regularly carrying out similar studies with in-house power system experts and software tools. TCE have executed a number of root cause analysis studies on various equipment and system faults.


Optimisation Of Deep Excavation for Coal Receiving System in a thermal power plant

Coal receiving systems can be optimized with cost reductions and in a safe environment without compromising on project delivery schedules.

A coal-fired thermal power plant was faced with the problem of selecting an appropriate & safe methodology for civil construction of deep underground units of the Coal Receiving System, with soft sub-soils and high ground water table. The constraints of tight construction schedule, hazardous site conditions and the need for cost optimization without compromising on safety was a challenge for TCE. With loose sand and ground water level within 1.0 m from surface civil constructions involving deep excavation was risky and unsafe. TCE developed a scheme providing multi-level braced steel sheet pile wall along with multi-stage well point dewatering system for the underground works. TCE provided analysis, design calculations, report, drawings and methodology for execution at site, technically justifying the solution. The project was successfully executed with cost reductions of 75-80% of original cost estimate. The solution also saved execution time and civil works were managed in a safe working environment within the stipulated time.


Modified design of temporary oven protection shed for a coke oven battery plant

Innovation in design of oven protection shed for coke oven plant.

Tata Consulting Engineers is providing Project management and Construction management consultancy to a steel major in Orissa. The protection shed design for the battery plan was modified to facilitate a parallel construction and second stage concreting of SCPinner track support. This solution of parallel construction helped with faster stamp charging pusher machine track erection. In real terms, the solution saved project run-time which translated to savings in project costs. The challenge was in the extensive modification of an existing design which had to be done within stringent safety and compliance requirements.


River Ganga Action Plan for "National Mission
for Clean Ganga by 2020

Blue print for innovative solutions in waste & sewerage management.

The River Ganga Action plan for National Mission for Clean Ganga by 2020 is a prestigious project and TCE's solutions relates to the stretch of the river Ganges at Allahabad and Kanpur. The features recommended are novel ideas for a typical sewerage system -

Recommendations for use of existing large size sewers by various internal lining methods

Considering Trenchless method for difficult open excavation in congested lanes of old city

Use of precast RCC manholes in congested lanes for quick installation

Reduced the cost of road restoration work by 30% through strategic way (top width of road cut plus 30cm on both sides and reinstatement of CC/Bituminous/BOE roads based on actual road length as per survey details)

De-silting of existing sewers in Kanpur for reuse which brought about 80% cost savings

Survey of existing large size sewers (mains) by opening manholes and relevant observations; About 25-30% cost reduction was achieved by rehabilitation of existing sewers with internal lining method

Detailed cost estimation for sewage treatment plant (STP) units based on preliminary design

Preparation of tender for STP on DBO basis with alternate treatment technologies - stringent review and approval by international experts

Social and Environmental Study for the sewerage project and financial analysis and tariff study for the entire project

TCE documents reviewed by NRCD, World Bank, FASEP, NGRBA, IIT Roorkee, GPCU-UPJN-Lucknow and approved in the steering committee meeting at Delhi

TCE provided technological and innovative solutions in various areas which saved capital cost, prevented pollution during execution, saved energy costs, ensured faster construction and execution harnessing project delays and the pollution of Ganga River. Several safety measures were adopted and resource conservation measures during construction and in O&M while implementing sewerage scheme, conservation of water for use of dewatered sludge, treated water etc. The project activity was undertaken with no hindrance to the general public.


Long distance ash slurry transportation for
Mine Void Filling

Managing ash disposal through an innovative process.

Ash disposal from coal-fired power plants, is a critical environmental concern. The Ministry of Environment & Forests (MOEF) in India stipulates 100% ash utilization for all new coal fired power plants from fourth year after commissioning of the plant. MOEF also indicates one of the means of ash utilization is mine stowing. 100% utilization of ash is a tough compliance requirement particularly for a country like India that largely depend on high ash domestic coal for power generation. Tata Consulting Engineers addressed this problem of ash utilization by recommending a long distance ash slurry transportation system through which the slurry was used to fill a mine void. This system is a first of its kind in the ash slurry application for distance of 25 km away from the plant. With this system, the entire ash from the power station can be transported into the mine void in.

The solution manages the ash disposal as per environmental stipulations and additionally serves as an environmentally friendly alternative to using sand to fill the mine void apart from savings in capital and operating expenditures. This system brings a new business opportunity for TCE for managing waste in coal-fired thermal plants.


Floating Solar Photovoltaic Plant

Throughout the world, the requirement for clean energy is critical for sustainable growth. A large scale deployment of solar power plants is underway. These plants require a vast expanse of land for installation. Land acquisition is a challenge and a major cause for delay in project implementation. Rising land cost and unavailability of suitable land for installation of such plants is driving the thinking towards installation of solar plants, which can float on water.

TCE has taken the lead to develop an indigenous floating solar photovoltaic (PV) plant design. This solution proposes use of indigenous, locally available, modular floating solar PV plants that can be .installed on reservoirs and other water bodies having relatively still water.

The benefit of TCE designed plant lies in its simplicity and ease in manufacturing without having limitation on design wind speed or tilt angle. The structure is easy to install, low in cost and maintenance with maximum utilization of solar radiation in an effective manner as compared to other existing floating PV systems. TCE designed floating system is cost efficient and can be recycled. Typical plant cost would be close to conventional ground mounted PV plants.TCE has filed an application for acquiring patent for this innovative design.


Efficency in FGD systems

Cost efficient process for coal-based power plants

The path to development is paved with a continuous need for power to fuel growth. The good news is that both governments and industries are conscious of this and are aligned to address this issue – the governments with stringent regulations and the industry responding with clean technologies. Coal-fired thermal plants have seen some environmental concerns. The flip side is that coal-fired plants also throws most difficult challenges for innovation in clean technologies and for producing cheaper power. Tata Consulting Engineers (TCE) has flashed the spark of innovation yet again to bring sustainable solutions to its customers, especially in coal-fired thermal power plants. The Company hit upon a process innovation in Flue Gas Desulphurization pertaining to coastal-based power plant.

What is FGD

Flue Gas Desulphurization(FGD) is a clean technology system that separates the sulphur dioxide from the exhaust flue gas of coal-fired thermal power plants. Typically, these systems require sea water or chemicals to absorb the sulphur dioxide. Thus FGDs help reduce the SOX emissions to almost 90 to 95% % from the flue gas exhaust and maintain the specified Ground level concentration of SOx within the norms stipulated by various national ambient air emission standards. The extent of regulation for inclusion of FGD systems in fossil-fired power plants varies in different countries across the world. Inland plants typically use chemicals (limestone or other chemicals) to absorb sulphur dioxide, whereas, coastal-based power plants are best benefitted by FGD systems that use sea water. This is because sea water's inherent natural property is conducive to absorption of sulphur dioxide. However, such sea water based FGDs require significant amount of sea water and large water intake systems.

Problems and innovative solutions

The commissioning of a power plant whether captive or standalone come with a host of compliance requirements. This is especially true for coal-based power plants. Tata Consulting Engineers successfully retrofitted an FGD system to a completed thermal power plant. This was a breakthrough solution, as the company had to create an innovative process to mange this. Retrofitting FGD systems to an existing facility has many angles to it - the topography of the plant site, the original design that will have to be modified to accommodate the FGD systems' requirements, the additional facility requirements to operate the FGD systems and most important of all, additional capex burden, project commissioning delays and the resultant project cost over-run. This was the trigger on hand for the Tata Consulting Engineers' team to put on the innovation hat. They put their heads together to create an innovative solution for retrofitting a sea water based FGD system, at minimal time and optimal cost benefit. With a window of twenty-four months, the FGD system was retrofitted and the plant was ready to go on stream completely compliant to environment norms. The process innovation opens up a plethora of opportunities in making coastal-based thermal power plants clean, efficient and environmentally compliant.

Options available for retrofitting of the FGD systems

Retro-fitting a conventional FGD system in a coastal based power plant imposes phenomenal cost escalation and requires time. The use of chemical based FGD is not relevant to coastal-based power plants as the economic advantage of using seawater in coastal-based plants will be lost. The new process innovation provides a solution that is cost efficient in its design and most of all the waste water management is optimal.

The process recommended is a first of its kind with no past references. The new process has implications on inherent systems when the FGD system is being retrofitted. With some modifications , Tata Consulting Engineers successfully implemented the innovative process within 24 months, ensuring huge cost benefits, time savings in plant commissioning, curtailing of project cost escalations and environmental compliances. This also helps in reducing the carbon foot print significantly, when compared to conventional FGD systems.Savings in Capex due to implementation of the innovative process in fitting FGD systems would be to the order of 10 to 20 % and expected savings in Opex would be to the tune of 10 to 50 % depending upon the peculiarities of sites and the projects.

The story of retrofitting FGD systems has many sequels to it. Tata Consulting Engineers' innovative process (economical and environmentally friendly) in FGD systems can be effectively applied to Greenfield, Brownfield and existing coastal -based power plants. Current regulatory compliance mechanisms are more stringent. Presently all countries do not mandate FGD systems in power plants. However, with a greater focus on clean power generation, it is expected that FGD systems would soon be mandated for all coal/oil -fired thermal power plants. The company has filed an application for patenting this technology process.

Tata Consulting Engineers Limited is known for providing solutions that are a first of its kind in various industry sectors that it is present in. This one goes to the sustainability of fossil-based power generation and cost efficient power to fuel growth.


Case Studies - Urban Planning

Assignment: Infrastructure development of two cities, Jodhpur and Bikaner in Rajasthan and commissioned by the Government of Rajasthan under Rajasthan Urban Infrastructure Development Plan

The assignment received the Infrastructure Excellence Award in the category of Best Design Project.

Scope :Road sector: Traffic studies and solutions for single lane, two lane and four lane carriageway; bituminous and concrete roads and construction of bridges over railway crossing were proposed.

The drainage sector: The plan for construction of 52 km length of drains and re-sectioning / strengthening of existing drains, providing solutions for flood prone areas of Jodhpur and Bikaner proposed.

Solid Waste Management: Centralised solutions for collection of waste using modern equipment and disposal through landfills was proposed.

Slum Improvement: Area development works like roads, sewerage, drains and water supply facilities in slum areas of Jodhpur and Bikaner.

Water & Sewerage Sector: Water treatment plant, two packages for transmission network, distribution network strengthening and NRW management, water distribution stations, construction of new pumping station, refurbishment of existing pumping machineries, raw water earthen impounding reservoir, technology solutions for distribution of water, ELSRs/GLSRs ,sewerage collection network and out fall sewer, one 20 MLD sewage treatment plant, technology solutions for sewage management was proposed.

Fire-fighting Systems: Fire station buildings consisting of four garages in each fire station along with Drill Tower for training was proposed. Fire service equipment for six cities was tendered. TCE's solutions helped put safety systems in place in the towns.

GIS and Mapping: A database covering details of existing water supply, sewerage pipelines and proposed utilities under different contracts is prepared for Jodhpur and Bikaner.

Heritage: The proposal included environmental improvement of water bodies and conservation/restoration of old heritage sites.

Emergency Health Services: Construction of advanced medical facilities and improvement/extension of satellite hospitals and dispensaries in Jodhpur and Bikaner were proposed.

The Challenge: The project had components from different disciplines and necessitated the deployment of experts from various fields. Working with three associate consultants and applying its singular expertise in individual sectors in one large area, called for a lot of coordination and precision in planning.

Value Additions: People living in the area round Khatarnak Puliya and Raikabagh in Jodhpur were relieved from the water logging menace thanks to the drainage solutions provided by TCE.

112 Kacchhi bastis of Jodhpur and Bikaner were benefited by the slum improvement solutions. 20,000 households in Bikaner came under the property connections network and 33000 households in Jodhpur came under the sewerage collection network bringing a source of revenue for the Bikaner and Jodhpur townships

The proposed water system was planned keeping in mind climate change concerns and a focus on reducing the carbon foot print. Total cost of energy for existing system was Rs 2.12 per Kl. After re-organisation of water system, the energy cost for the combined system has become Rs 1.41/Kl. This has resulted in total energy cost saving of Rs 222 lakhs per annum.

The rehabilitation of slums, makeover of an abandoned lake, increase in revenue by bringing consumers in the fold of the water and sewer disposal network, flood and water logging solutions, etc benefitted nearly 1,90,000 people


Case Study: ITER - India

ITER is an international fusion reactor which is being constructed under the collaborative efforts of seven participating countries namely European Union, United States of America, Russia, Japan, Korea, China and India. The main objective of ITER is to demonstrate the scientific and technical feasibility of a controlled fusion reaction by producing about 500MWth of fusion power by Deuterium - Tritium Plasma at Cadarache, France.

The Indian scope of the project is being accomplished through ITER India, Institute for Plasma Research (IPR), an autonomous institute under Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India. ITER-India has entrusted TCE the responsibility for detailed engineering of the project for Component Cooling Water System (CCWS), Chilled Water System (CHWS) and Heat Rejection System (HRS).

A team from Tata Consulting Engineers is currently working on these assignments. For the systems engineered by Tata Consulting Engineers, the scope of work ranges from design basis report and system optimization to tender specifications. It also includes Reliability, Availability, Maintainability and Inspectability analysis (RAMI) and Failure Modes, Effects and Criticality analysis (FMECA).


Power System Control Revised Case Study

Interruption of power supply and its impact can have serious repurcussions on the production cycle, facilities, equipment performance and human productivity. Power outage management is a critical area were technology solutions are required to mitigate the impact of power outages. There are a number of measures available to minimize the possibility of occurrence of black outs, or, mitigate its adverse effects on important class of consumers.

Electric power system comprises components and systems like Generators, transformers, transmission lines and distribution networks, each of which is liable to be affected by insulation failure, due to over voltage or over load. They may also fail under normal service conditions owing to aging or poor quality of material or of manufacturing process. The conductors comprising the transmission and distribution network are also exposed to the elements like lightning, rain, wind, snow etc. which can cause short circuit faults or otherwise damage supporting structures. Insulation failure due to any of these causes lead to trip outs and other disturbances which at times be severe enough to culminate in wide spread power outages or black outs.


Bengal Aerotropolis Project Limited (BAPL), Burdwan district of West Bengal

Project features:

Simultaneous development of Underground Coal Mines and Aerotropolis.

The Project area hosts a number of regionally persistent coal seams having substantial reserves and also rich in Coal Bed Methane (CBM).

Tata Consulting Engineers conducted various technological investigations to assess the possibilities for simultaneous development of BAPL Project, underground mining of coal and plan of exploitation of CBM. Tata Consulting Engineers carried out the studies in the following three stages:

Impact assessment.

Preparing a mining plan and Detailed Project Report for Underground mining with zero subsidence at surface.

Approach to exploit CBM potential within the BAPL project area from outside the BAPL area.

On the basis of TCE investigations, the BAPL Project was given 'green signal' by the West Bengal State Government in consultation with Ministry of Coal (MoC) and Ministry of Aviaion (MoA).


Towards cleaner sponge iron manufacturing
in West Bengal - World Bank funded Sector Study of Sponge Iron Industry

A World Bank funded initiative, the West Bengal Pollution Control Board appointed Tata Consulting Engineers a sector study of sponge iron (SI) industry in West Bengal in 2012-13.

The Challenge

The principal alternative route in iron making is Direct Reduction of Iron (DRI) by use of coal. The sponge iron sector is characterized by operators ranging from small scale capacity of maximum 50 or 100 tpd units to large scale enterprises of about 500 TPD. The process is dependent on sized iron ore and non-coking coal of 25% ash content.

Due to the scarcity of such non-coking coal with 25% ash content the industry depends on high ash coal which results in inferior product quality as well as poor environmental compliance.

Assignment Scope

Tata Consulting Engineers was entrusted with the assessment of Environmental pollution impact of sponge iron units in West Bengal vis-à-vis the rest of India and suggest clean technology options.

This includes scope for use of clean coal bed methane (CBM), which is available in Eastern coal fields and use in direct reduction substituting coal partially in 60 sponge iron (SI) units across West Bengal. This would ultimately lead to a path for future technology transformation to gas based reduction with CBM. About 10 (ten) SI units has been visited for monitoring the emissions and assessing the status of environmental management and overall nearly sixty (60) Units surveyed in five (5) districts of West Bengal.

The Study Report aims at facilitating capacity build up of Environmental Compliance Assistance Centre (ECAC), an independent Centre presently under WBPCB in achieving environmental compliance and directing the policy decision makers and industry stakeholders for a re-positioning of this industry sector throughout India in the years ahead.

Value Additions

Tata Consulting Engineers carried out the studies from the environmental, commercial and technological angle and put forth recommended solution such as Tunnel Kiln technology, coal quality management, etc. The assessment report and recommendations are expected to benefit the state of West Bengal and the sponge iron industry sector here.


Turnkey execution of India's largest blast
furnace for steel plant in Rourkela


Rendered civil and structural works comprising furnace foundation, 4-poster structure, equipment foundation, roads, railway tracks, drawing and sewerage. Utilities and auxiliaries comprised off furnace cooling system, compressed air, nitrogen, steam, oxygen for blast furnace proper, gas cleaning plant, cast house, bell-less top charging system, stove valve cooling, air-conditioning and ventilation systems.

Value Additions:

The plant construction and commissioning was been done in a record time and in line with international stand.

Innovative engineering solutions:

Design and engineering of 4-poster structure thereby eliminating the need for pouring concrete into the hollow structures Engineered sequence of installation of the down comer connecting blast furnace and gas cleaning plant

Blast furnace foundation was designed, critically examined and approvals for construction procured to suit site conditions such that no re-engineering was called for.

Design/Engineering of systems and sub-systems were critically examined to enable problem-free construction.

Design inputs from various agencies were compiled and integrated in design for construction in record time. State-of-the-art safety solutions were provided in design, basic engineering inputs, operational maintenance, extensive fire fighting systems, fire detection systems were incorporated and gratings were provided to ensure accident-free operations.

The innovations, safety measures and timely delivery provided cost efficiencies to the client


Case Study: Asia's largest decorative paint
facility with capacity of 300,000 kl per annum of paint


Tata Consulting Engineers was entrusted with basic and detail engineering, procurement services, inspection and expediting and construction supervision services for the decorative paint plant.

Value added

'Pigging' technology solution helped reduce the complexity of the plant, simplified the piping lines and made it easier for plant automation. This involved the pigging for transfer of liquid raw materials and products. This technology helps transfer various chemicals through a dedicated pipe and is also useful in cleaning the pipelines. This helped to reduce the number of transfer lines thereby reducing the complexity of the plant around the equipment. By simplifying the piping requirements, it is possible to make the plant fully automatic. An automatic equipment cleaning system (automatic CIP) system was also part of the engineering plan.

The design engineering and planning was done on a fully-integrated 3D engineering platform with a client review interface. This helped in infusing predictability to the project. PDMS modelling of entire plant including civil, underground facilities, mechanical, equipment, piping, electrical and instrumentation also ensured greater accuracy and quality in the design.

Plant designed on zero discharge concept

Waste management solutions reduced fresh water intake. The 100% tertiary treatment and recycle of sewage reduced fresh water intake by about 40% .

Around 30% of total plot area has been ear-marked as green-belt zone.


Technology & cultural integration –
Construction management for Brownfield coke oven and by-product

The construction management of this huge plant with 88 oven chambers meant - Bringing together 11 domestic and international partners.

Interpreting Chinese technology and implementing in Indian conditions, Multiple Indian contractors to be oriented into stringent safety standards & all this managed with no downtime of existing plant.

Technological feats

Dismantling top structural arrangements and brick lining five layers of top coming from a height of 145 meters for a chimney from the outer-side.

Erection of coal conveyor gallery between two coal towers at a height of 54 metres.

Construction of junction house and coal conveyor gallery with 12 metres depth alongside existing coal conveyor.

Installation of large numbers of stainless steel burner pipes, cleaning nozzle pipes in each block of battery within very close tolerance for their locations.

Construction and retrofitting of new cooling tower in by-product area and dismantling of existing cooling tower for clearing front for scrubbers and compressor house.

Construction of cooling tower basin on the roof of process chiller plant.

Construction of 68 metres high quenching tower wall along with refractory work and installation of de-dusting nozzles at 58 and 43 metres inside the quenching tower.


International safety standards,commissioning
in record time and retrofitting with no downtime

There were several other challenges especially on account of retrofitting a large facility upgrade with no downtime. These challenges were addressed with innovative solutions which have now become benchmark practices for such a facility erection. The Construction Service unit helped to commission the plant in record time and in concurrence with international safety standards.


Skill Building Programs

IT-enabled drafting for ITI Students


Employability for students in the ITI courses

Program execution:

Independent program conducted by TCE employees

Computer aided design (CAD) and mechanical drafting are entry level skills that are core to our design engineering services. Several technical institutes in India have the draftsman trade in their curriculum. These courses are taken up by youngsters who cannot afford regular skill building programs. However these trades do not involve computer and IT applications. This skill gap which makes the youngsters enrolled in the government-supported ITI programs more employable is met with our unique Draftsman Design Application course as a CSR & Affirmative Action initiative.

TCEndeavour's Affirmative Action program to provide education and employability is designed to impart practical knowledge in TCE's core expertise. This program will help increase employability of SC/ST students with requisite qualifications. The plan is to provide training in IT drafting applications for 2nd year SC/ST students in the ITI draftsman trade. The program comprises three levels of training – Basic, Advanced & Specialist with a certification at the end of each level.

The pilot program is presently running in Bangalore and Chennai as a series of weekend courses. The TCEndeavour Champs.

Volunteered to serve as Trainers. The students found the program extremely relevant as the training filled a skill gap in their regular ITI program. The students in Bangalore requested a fast-track course and completed the basic program in time for their ITI campus job interview schedules. The basic course covers the basics in AUTOCAD drafting application. This will provide students an edge over others in the campus recruitments.

The advanced course entails detailed application orientation that will help students qualify for apprenticeships in the industry. The specialist programs will involve training in piping, electrical and aspects of detailed design engineering. Students will be provided a certificate once they complete and qualify at each phase of the program. The basic course for the students in the pilot program is complete and some students found placements in the industry. The program will be extended to other locations in a phased manner.


Pollution Management Solutions


Tata Consulting Engineers was appointed consultants to a steel-making giant for pollution control and emissions management.

Objective :

To meet and exceed stringent environmental norms recommended to manage the overall ambient air quality.

Value Added:

Tata Consulting Engineers helped commission a CEMS (Continuous Emission Management System) which has ensured greater transparency and commitment by the client.

Tata Consulting Engineers' technology solutions helped in selecting the appropriate air pollution control equipments to reduce the stack emissions. The design also takes care of workplace air quality to maintain OSHAS norms. The project was carried out in a Brownfield site with operational challenges of shutdown requirement, space crunch and safety requirements.

Tata Consulting Engineers has recommended solutions for continuous improvement and the system is among the largest in the country.


Resource conservation in the infrastructure planning of an Aerotropolis township


Design and project management of integrated infrastructure for the township of 1,700 acres covering water, sewerage, drainage, solid waste management, fire, disaster management, electrical distribution, telecommunication, safety and security aspects.

Value Added:

The solution proposed included rainwater harvesting and water management designed to retain 22 ponds covering over 11 hectares of area. These ponds are being preserved and over 300 ml of rainwater will be harvested in these ponds. The drainage system has been planned to route the surface water runoff surrounding through these ponds. The annual mass balance for the ponds reveals that at least, minimum water level will be maintained through summer.

Based on zero discharge concept, sewage generated from the township is proposed to be treated by Sequential Batch Reactor ( SBR ) process at the sewage treatment plant. It is proposed to provide tertiary treatment. Post tertiary treatment, the treated sewage water will be used for flushing and irrigation. The prescribed solution will result in 50% reduction of fresh water intake from 38 mld to 18 mld.


Case Studies - Engineering a Tech-city of the Future

Engineering a Tech-city of the Future

An international finance tech-city for a rapidly developing state in India is intended to be India's foremost destination for financial services and other multi-services sector. The State Government established a joint venture company for the development of the tech city. This ambitious project of the Sate Government is designed to stand proud on the banks of the river Sabarmati, built to be a colossal township spread over 25,000 acres with office buildings on 880 acres. Tata Consulting Engineers Limited has been appointed as engineering consultants and is presently handling the city planning and detailed engineering. The magnitude of the project and the planning required showcases, Tata Consulting Engineers' capabilities as a high-end engineering solutions provider. The project run-time is expected to extend to about 11 years.

Scope of TCE's involvement entails total infrastructure master plan covering -

Power Supply

Water Supply Distribution - Raw Water pumping Station and Pipeline , Water Treatment & Master Planning of Water Supply Distribution Network for 673 Acres.

Wastewater Collection & Treatment

Master planning for Storm Water Drainage Management

External Fire Safety Systems

Solid Waste Management

Largest District Cooling Systems

Irrigation Systems

Transportation - External Connectivity, Improvement of existing access roads, Connectivity to national highway, Arterial, sub-arterial and internal roads , Vehicular & pedestrian underpasses, Flyovers , Metro Line with Stations.

Tata Consulting Engineers' engineering expertise entailed innovative solutions that provided cost-effective options, environmentally sustainable waste management & water management solutions, resource conservation measures and ensuring that the city is built on a 'green' concept. This project is not only the pride of the state which is in the limelight for its growth but also a proud accomplishment for Tata Consulting Engineer's Infrastructure Business as this is a platform that showcases the company's capabilities.

Case Studies



S Padmanabhan takes over from Prasad Menon as Chairman, Tata Consulting Engineers

Tata Consulting Engineers to provide PMC services for South Asian University

Tata Consulting Engineers. Honoured with "Best Consultant Award for TCE"

Tata Lockheed Martin Aerostructures conducts empennage delivery ceremony of facility engineered by Tata Consulting Engineers

John Deer Tractor Plant at Indore engineered by Tata Consulting Engineers inaugurated on 22 Oct 2013


S Padmanabhan takes over from Prasad Menon as Chairman, Tata Consulting Engineers

Mr S Padmanabhan has taken over as Chairman, Tata Consulting Engineers Ltd with effect from 23 Jan 2016. He succeeds Mr Prasad Menon who retires after a distinguished stint on the board of Tata Consulting Engineers Ltd.


Tata Consulting Engineers. Honoured with "Best Consultant"

Tata Consulting Engineers. Honoured with "Best Consultant" Award instituted by the Council of Power Utilities at the 6th India Power Awards 2013 ceremony held at Taj Krishna, Hyderabad on Friday, November 22, 2013. Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Mr Kiran Kumar Reddy, was the Chief Guest.


Tata Lockheed Martin Aerostructures conducts empennage delivery ceremony of facility engineered by Tata Consulting Engineers

Tata Lockheed Martin Aerostructures Ltd (TLMAL)) conducted Empennage Delivery Ceremony on 11-11-2013 at Hyderabad. Mr. David Tucker (CEO) of TLMAL described the aircraft parts assembly facility as a 'world class facility' built in India. Tata Consulting Engineers is proud to have done the complete engineering and construction management for this facility.


John Deer Tractor Plant at Indore engineered by Tata Consulting Engineers inaugurated on 22 Oct 2013

The John Deer Tractor Plant at Dewas near Indore was inaugurated on 22nd October by Mr. Samuel R. Allen Chairman and CEO, Deer and Company and Mark von Penz, President Agriculture and Turf Division Europe, Asia & Africa. During the inauguration, efforts by Tata Consulting Engineers in creating John Deer's world class facility was appreciated.


Tata Consulting Engineers to provide PMC services for South Asian University

Tata Consulting Engineers signed an agreement with the South Asian University along with the consortium partners for the Construction of Campus for South Asian University , Phase I . TCE will provide Project Management Consultancy Services for construction of the campus to be based in New Delhi.



Tata Consulting Engineers has successfully managed complex engineering projects across the infrastructure spectrum.


The Power Business of Tata Consulting Engineers is a leader in energy engineering solutions.


Tata Consulting Engineers' Nuclear Energy business is part of the country's nuclear power program right from its very beginning.


Our innovative chemical process engineering translates to smart business solutions for our customers.

Steel Metal and Mining

Our focus areas include raw material handling system, coke oven, sinter plant, blast furnace, direct reduction etc.