BHEL Current Affairs - 2019

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ISRO–BHEL tie up for Production of Space Grade Lithium-Ion Cells

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has entered into Technology Transfer Agreement (TTA) with Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) to transfer technology for manufacturing space grade Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) cells.

The technology transfer will enable BHEL to produce space grade Li-Ion cells which can meet country’s space programme requirements. It can also be adopted to cater Li-Ion cell requirement for other national needs.

Key Facts

The ISRO uses Li-Ion batteries as power sources for satellite and launch vehicle applications due to their high energy density, reliability and long cycle life. ISRO’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) at Thiruvananthapuram has successfully developed technology to produce space grade Li-ion cell. It also has demonstrated performance of cell under various testing conditions and established its cycle life characteristics in accelerated mode. These Li-Ion cells are currently being used for various satellite and launch vehicle applications.

Li-Ion battery

Lithium-ion battery or Li-ion battery is type of rechargeable battery that contains several cells. Each cell consists of cathode, anode and electrolyte, a separator between electrodes and current collectors. In it, lithium ions move from negative electrode to positive electrode during discharge and back when charging. Li-ion battery use intercalated lithium compound as one electrode material.

Benefits of Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) battery

The lithium-ion battery is light weighted and is one-third the weight of lead acid batteries. It is nearly 100% efficient in both charging and discharging as compared to lead battery which has 70% efficiency. It completely discharges i.e. 100% as compared to 80% for lead acid.

The rechargeable lithium-ion battery has life cycle of 5000 times or more compared to just 400-500 cycles in lead acid. It also maintains constant voltage throughout the entire discharge cycle whereas voltage in lead acid battery drops consistently throughout its discharge cycle. It is much cleaner technology and is safer for environment as it does not have environmental impact as lead acid battery.

Bangladesh, India sign agreement for joint coal fired power plant

Bangladesh and India have signed an agreement for the construction of a 1,320 megawatt (MW) coal fired power plant near Sundarbans.

The agreement was signed between Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company (Pvt) Limited (BIFPCL), the joint venture enterprise and Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL).

BHEL was selected under an open international tender for constructing the super thermal plant at Bangladesh’s southwestern Rampal near the Sundarbans.

Key Facts

  • This coal fired power plant is the biggest project under bilateral cooperation between both countries that would mark the transition from electricity export to generation level.
  • India’s Exim Bank will provide US 1.49 billion dollars for the project and it is scheduled to start generating power in 2019.
  • The deal came amid concerns by environmental groups that this power plant could affect the delicate ecosystem of the world’s largest mangrove forest in Sundarbans, a world heritage site spreading over both Bangladesh and India.

Earlier Bangladesh had earmarked Maitree Super Thermal Power Project (MSTPP) as one of its fast-track projects. It was started under a bilateral agreement between India and Bangladesh signed during Prime Minister Hasina’s India visit in 2010.