Bharat Heavy Electricals dismisses Neyveli Lignite’s charges

May 29th, 2011 - 4:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, May 29 (IANS) Rejecting Neyveli Lignite Corporation’s charges that the boilers supplied to it had a design fault, Indian power equipment giant Bharat Heavy Electricals says it will run its two 125 MW power units in Rajasthan at full capacity for 15 days to show them the way to operate them and prove them wrong.

“We have sorted out the issue and have given Neyveli Lignite the methodology of running the power units,” said Jainender Kumar, executive director for project management with Bharat Heavy Electricals.

“Next month we will run the two units at full load and give them the parameters to be followed in the future,” Kumar told IANS over phone from New Delhi.

His reaction came after Neyveli Lignite chairman and managing director A.R. Ansari’s charge Friday that there is a design fault in the two 125 MW boilers supplied for its Rajasthan project. The units were commissioned June 2010 but started facing problems, thereby halting power generation for nearly a year.

“We had told them that their boiler should be capable of handling lignite with an ash content ranging between 8-30 percent. They initially agreed but later was not able to meet the expectation. There is a design failure in their boiler,” Ansari said.

In his response, Kumar said: “While burning the lignite, we encountered the problems of sintering (lump formation) which was not there in other boilers in India, including in Rajasthan. It is a unique problem confined to NLC’s units in Barsingsar.”

He said his company studied the sintering problem and suggested mixing red sand to solve the problem. “We also demonstrated that the mixing of sand will not corrode the boiler components,” he added.

Neyveli Lignite also complained of delayed supplies by Bharat Heavy Electricals for its 1,000 MW joint venture power project in Tuticorin and the 2×250MW units in Neyveli — both in Tamil Nadu.

Kumar said: “As per the contract, they were supposed to provide fabrication and storage space at Tuticorin. They were not able to do that at one location. So we had to dump our material wherever there was open space.”

He said land had been leased from Tuticorin Port Trust only recently and the material will now have to be shifted out there.

“The delay in the Tuticorin project is only six months. We have given them a catch up plan. As per our plan, the delay will be cut short to few weeks. The two boiler drums will be lifted and installed in June-July,” Kumar said.

About the 2×250 MW boilers at Neyveli, he said the technology was new and it took some time for the company to sort it out.

“But BHEL alone cannot be blamed for the 28-month delay as charged. The limited number of vendors delayed the project. In the last six months, extensive work has been done,” Kumar said, adding matching inputs have to come from Neyveli Lignite.

The first unit will be commissioned next month and the second unit in 2012, Kumar said and noted that the boiler-turbine generator is only one portion of contract awarded in the power projects.

“Forty percent of the power project contracts comprise of balance of plant, including civil works and supply of other equipment. They have to be ready for us to perform our part of the contract,” he remarked.

Citing several power projects promoted by the National Thermal Power Corp that were commissioned on time, he said Bharat Heavy Electricals had performed its part of the contract on schedule.

(Venkatachari Jagannathan can be reached at v.jagannathan@ians.in and biz@ians.in)

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