Ministry of Power Answers Queries on Grid Stability During 9PM9Minutes

The Ministry of Power has issued FAQs answering the most important questions raised by the public and key stakeholders on grid stability during 9PM9Minutes

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at 9 AM on April 3, 2020, had urged all countrymen to switch off their lights for 9 minutes at 9 pm on Sunday (April 5, 2020) and asked them to light diyas, candles or use the flashlight of their mobile phones as a sign of solidarity in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. The Prime Minister had made the appeal in a video address. 

However, a short while after the PM’s announcement there were growing concerns about the national grid being able to bear the strain go huge power demand loss at once and then a massive surge 9 minutes later. With Maharashtra Power Minister Nitin Raut being the first to warn of a power grid failure if all lights switched off at the same time.

Following which the Power Grid Corporation had asked all regions to take extra precautions to ensure no break in supply.

Amid growing concerns in the public, the Ministry of Power has issued FAQs answering the most important questions raised by the public and key stakeholders.

Question: The load of home-lightings alone is around 20 percent of the total load. Would a sudden disconnect of 20 percent load not destabilise the grid? What measures will the Ministry take?

Answer: Domestic lighting load is much less than 20 percent. Such kind of reduction in demand can be easily managed for which standard technical operating protocols are in place.

Question: Whether adequate arrangements and protocols are in place to handle grid stability during light out event on 5th April at 9:00 PM to 9.09 pm?

Answer:  Yes, all adequate arrangements and standard operating protocols are in place to maintain grid stability.

Question: Some apprehensions have been expressed that this may cause instability in the grid and fluctuation in voltage which may harm the electrical appliances. 

Answer: These apprehensions are totally misplaced. These are a normal phenomenon and the Indian Electricity Grid is well designed to handle such load variation and frequency changes as per standard operating protocols.

Question: Whether our grid management and technology deployed will withstand the fluctuation that lights out may cause?

Answer: The Indian electricity grid is robust and stable and employs state-of-art technology. It has in place necessary control and protective elements capable of handling such kind of fluctuations in demand at any instant of time.

Question: Whether Street Lights will go off.

Answer: No. In fact, all States/UTs/ Local bodies have been advised to keep the street lights on for public safety.

Questions: Whether Hospitals or other emergency and important installations will face light out.

Answer: No, the lights in Hospitals and all other essential services like Public Utilities, Municipal Services, Offices, Police Stations, Manufacturing Facilities, etc will remain on. The call given by Hon’ble PM is to just switch off lights in residences.

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Ayush Verma

Ayush Verma

Ayush is a staff writer at saurenergy.com and writes on renewable energy with a special focus on solar and wind. Prior to this, as an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he worked as a correspondent for iamrenew.com.

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