There will be a growing use of gas and other alternate fuels for gensets

  • Articles
  • Mar 01,24
Shveta Arya, Business Head, Power System Business, Cummins India, in this interview, gives an overview of the power gensets market in India and also informs about the recent trends in the industry.
There will be a growing use of gas and other alternate fuels for gensets

Cummins India is one of the leading power solutions providers in the country. The company has a strong manufacturing backbone and boasts six state-of-the-art manufacturing plants and distribution facilities. Shveta Arya, Business Head, Power System Business, Cummins India, in this interview, gives an overview of the power gensets market in India and also informs about the recent trends in the industry.

Kindly brief us about Cummins' power gensets business in India. 

In the Power Systems Business, the company designs and manufactures engines powering integrated power generation solutions covering a broad power range of 7.5 kVA to 3750 kVA and high horsepower engines ranging from 700 HP to 4,500 HP for industrial applications. 

The gensets are engineered to serve the diverse needs of customers across manufacturing, infrastructure, healthcare, commercial and residential realty, data centres, pharma, and many more, and the engines are tailored to meet the demands of high-power applications across marine, railways, defense, mining, oil and gas, compressors, and construction sectors. 

How is the market for power genset in India (present and prospects)? Of the various types of gensets (such as diesel, natural gas, and alternative fuel-powered), which are experiencing high demand?

As of the present moment, the market for power gensets in India is witnessing a mix of dynamics influenced by various factors. Traditionally, diesel gensets have been predominant in the Indian market due to their cost effectiveness, reliability, and widespread availability.

Based on usage, the market is divided into industrial, commercial, and residential categories. Among these segments, the commercial segment dominates the market, primarily due to the steady expansion of the service sector in the form of hotels, healthcare facilities, restaurants, IT hubs, and financial institutions. Besides these, there is a notable increase in demand for power gensets from the data center segment due to data localisation and increased data storage requirements. These trends coupled with the government’s push for infrastructure development are driving demand for power gensets.

Looking into the future, the prospects for the power genset market in India appear promising. Despite a significant reduction in the power deficit, there is an increased focus on power reliability across industries, commercial establishments, and residential complexes. The government's emphasis on initiatives like Make in India and the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan is also expected to boost domestic manufacturing of gensets, further driving market growth.

Last year, Cummins India launched CPCB IV+ compliant generators. What are the advantages of these generators for the users (compared to other types of gensets available on the market)? 

Cummins India’s CPCBIV+ compliant range represents a remarkable engineering achievement. We have transformed the traditional genset engine which is a mechanical device into sophisticated electronic technologies integrated with intelligent control systems, advanced after-treatment systems, remote monitoring, and predictive maintenance capabilities. This transformation has resulted in a significant 90 per cent reduction in particulate matter (PM) and harmful nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from genset exhaust compared to the previous range of gensets.

The integration of advanced engine technologies and after-treatment systems enhances system durability by offering superior performance, improved fuel economy, and equipment reliability. This not only enables our customers to meet their diverse backup power needs but also helps them contribute toward environmental sustainability. Additionally, customers are not required to install any retrofit devices or dual fuel kits to manage emissions in the field, thus reducing the total cost of ownership.

Which are the other technological advancements that Cummins is offering in power gensets?

At Cummins, we are driven by innovation and a commitment to create a positive environmental impact. As we draw on our illustrious legacy of 60+ years in India and over a century of global experience, we are confident in our ability to utilise advanced digital tools, adhere to stringent emission norms, and tailor our products to meet specific market and customer needs. 

Cummins-powered gensets compliant with the latest emission norms of CPCB IV+ exemplify this commitment, offering clean and efficient power solutions that address the evolving needs of our customers while staying committed to environmental sustainability.

The Cummins-powered CPCB IV+ compliant gensets are equipped with advanced after-treatment systems with proven technology and compact design that includes Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR), Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) lines, DEF supply unit, and DEF tank which are all supplied in-house.

Further, these gensets have a closed-loop system with real-time remote monitoring. This system significantly enhances the performance and reliability of gensets, as it continuously assesses the genset's operating performance and emission compliance, ensuring it stays within optimal parameters. In case of any deviations, the system raises an alarm allowing for immediate corrective actions. The customers also receive alert notifications via SMS and E-Mail, enabling timely responses thus minimising downtime, and ensuring that the gensets operate at peak performance levels, ultimately contributing to their overall reliability and longevity.

What are the key hurdles in the growth of the power genset market in India?

Diesel gensets, often operating in the background, play a pivotal role in fueling India’s economic growth and transformation. Their reliability, durability, adaptability, and technological advancements ensure a consistent and uninterrupted power supply, thereby mitigating risks, enhancing productivity, and driving sustainable development.

However, despite their reliability and technological advancements, these gensets often face challenges in the form of sustainability concerns, stringent regulations, and cost variations due to fuel price fluctuations.

In addition to the above, the adoption of advanced technologies, such as renewable energy integration, energy storage solutions, and smart grid technologies, face barriers related to cost, scalability, and technological readiness. While these innovations hold the potential to improve genset efficiency and reduce environmental impact, their high upfront costs and limited market maturity can slow down adoption rates.

There are regular efforts and initiatives driven by various stakeholders, including government bodies, industry players, and consumers, to promote sustainable and resilient energy solutions to address these.

What kinds of emerging trends are you witnessing in the power genset industry?

The Indian Power generator industry is undergoing a transformative

 phase, characterised by innovation and adaptation to meet future needs. Diesel Generator industries anticipate growth in the coming years, driven by technological advancements and strong infrastructure development. The mushrooming high-rise buildings, commercial offices, and shopping complexes contribute to this growth trajectory. Additionally, increasing advancement in the construction segment, the growing manufacturing industry, and the rising number of data centers are escalating the demand for uninterrupted power supply, thus fueling the growth of the power genset market in India.

Furthermore, there could be a growing trend towards the use of gas and other alternate fuels for gensets. Also, microgrids are expected to gain traction to provide more distributed power and to utilise cleaner fuels in an optimised way. 


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