You are here: Home » Economy & Policy » News
Business Standard

India plans more power islands to counter cyber, terrorist threats

The plan follows a major power outage in India's financial hub Mumbai last year that brought the city to a halt and prompted speculation about a cyber attack

Topics
Cyberattacks | Terror Threat | Power grids

Rajesh Kumar Singh | Bloomberg 

power, electricity, IIP, grids, cyber security, demand, discoms, distribution, companies, firms, transmission, transformer, workers
Islanding systems feature generation capacity and can isolate automatically from the main grid in the event of an outage.

India is discussing a plan to create so-called power islanding systems in several cities to protect critical infrastructure from potential attacks on the electricity grid, power minister Raj Kumar Singh said.

Cities including Bengaluru, known as India’s Silicon Valley, and Jamnagar, which has two of India’s largest oil refineries, are among cities being assessed for an islanding system, Singh told lawmakers in parliament Thursday. Existing systems in cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai are being revamped, he said.

The plan follows a major power outage in India’s financial hub Mumbai last year that brought the city to a halt and prompted speculation about a cyber attack. The year before, the country’s nuclear power monopoly reported computer systems at one of its generation plants had been attacked by malware. the world over are increasingly digitalized, leaving them vulnerable to such attacks.

Islanding systems feature generation capacity and can isolate automatically from the main grid in the event of an outage. For the new systems, provinces need to submit proposals for setting up generation and storage capacities, Singh said in his written comments Thursday.

The strategy was questioned in some quarters.

“Islanding entire cities is a very 20th-century idea,” said Reji Pillai, president of the India Smart Grid Forum, which advises the government and utilities on smart grid technologies. “Where’s the space in Bengaluru for setting up new generation plants, and without adequate generation capacity within the islanded area what is the purpose of islanding?”

Instead, Pillai recommended smart microgrids for isolating smaller areas, such as commercial and industrial complexes, shopping malls, airports, defense units, railway stations and hospitals. The system would be connected to the main network and could isolate automatically in the event of an outage. The microgrids would run on a mix of battery and rooftop solar power, he said.

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Sat, July 24 2021. 06:44 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU
.