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Team RE-INVEST

Ministry of New and Renewable Energy


Start-ups: new frontiers in renewable energy

The National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) in Gurugram, an autonomous institute under Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is conducting the 14th edition of Prospects of Start-ups in Solar Energy Technologies programme during this week.

Quite popular among upcoming solar entrepreneurs, EPC contractors, graduate engineers, officials from government and state nodal agencies, the week-long programme gives deep insight into the economics of solar technologies, business models for funding, scope and business opportunities in solar PV models and solar water pumping technologies. It is also an opportunity for participants to learn about getting assistance under Startup India and Stand-Up India schemes of the Govt of India, tax payments and different compliance mechanism with Ministry of Corporate Affairs, etc.

Similarly, in Wind Sector the National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE) in Chennai, an autonomous institute under MNRE organizes national level training programmes. The week-long training course covers all aspects of wind power harnessing staring from wind resource assessment to project implementation and operations & maintenance in a focussed manner.

Likewise, start-ups for entrepreneur development in RE gets support under a project sanctioned to Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE), IIM Ahmedabad. This project has generated 40 start-ups to RE sector.

Such programmes are aimed towards achieving the target of 175 GW capacity renewable energy in the country by 2022 and also a reflection of our ambition and concerted efforts in making India the most sought-after market for business opportunities in clean energy.

Today, India is ranked the second most attractive renewable energy market in the world. Government is spearheading various initiatives to make unconventional energy an integral part of the country’s overall energy mix. Through schemes like Make in India, Skill India, Startup India, Stand-Up India, upcoming entrepreneurs are being promoted to float Innovative technologies in the market. Recently, Invest India, a national investment promotion and facilitation agency under the Central govt introduced a lab-to-market opportunity for start-ups in the energy sector. It has invited innovators working in energy efficiency, cooling or B2B e-markets among others to give a push to clean technology.

Premier engineering institutes like Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) are promoting start-ups through incubation centres. Like IIT-Hyderabad incubated start-up has developed affordable lithium batteries which can be used in agriculture, defence and aerospace. They have also developed solar hybrid systems combining solar PV with battery back-up and grid synchronization.

Through innovative technologies, these cleantech start-ups are addressing the issues which are proving to be boon for renewable projects run by state power utilities. Using data analytics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence, they are helping to figure out the power load of the day which was earlier dependent upon simple computing techniques. Likewise, they are forecasting wind power generation to schedule the power flows. Some start-ups are generating the forecast for every kilowatt by identifying solar panels and mapping every wind farm across states.

Today, Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Ltd (IREDA) is financing new technology, new projects after mitigating the perceived risks in any new project or venture.

In the coming years, the emphasis of these start-ups on innovation in business models, products and service will make smart cities easily run on clean energy.