Analysis of Large-Scale Energy Storage options for the interconnected electricity system in the Indian Subcontinent

Karthik Subramanya Bhat, Udo Bachhiesl

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


While the rest of the world is welcoming a new decade, the Indian subcontinent region is ushering in a new era of renewable energy. Increased interest in electricity generation from Variable Renewable Energy (VRE) sources in the Indian Subcontinent region has led to both positive and complex situations. The electricity sectors of several countries in the region have now long term and sustainable plans to improve their respective shares of renewable energy sources. With increasing awareness to the impacts of climate change, and agreements to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) [1] and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 2030) [2], the world’s largest development in renewable energy is being seen in the Indian electricity sector [3]. Large shares of solar PV, and Onshore wind capacities are being implemented as of now, and several more adding to a total of 175 GW are proposed in the coming decade. Such a large penetration of VRE sources needs to be supported by a significantly large energy storage capacities, for a sustainable and efficient working of thesaid electricity system. Unfortunately, large scale energy storage options in the Indian subcontinent as of now is very limited [4], with pumped hydro capacities amounting up to 5 GW and few installations of battery storage capacity installations. Furthermore, the accelerated implementation of India’s electromobility goals could also create a complex situation without large energy storage installations [5][6]. The Table 1. illustrates the available and proposed/ planned energy storage capacity installations in the Indian electricity sector in the year 2019. Exploration of the several available energy storage options and a strategy for a barrier-free integration of such capacities in the interconnected subcontinental electricity sector is a much-needed necessity. Additionally, techno-economic simulations of the designed strategies provide a better understanding of the situation now, and also of the several unforeseen impacts on the electricity sector due to the implementation of the said strategies.

Several challenges exist for choosing a specific technology set for large scale energy storage in the region. Thus, with regards to availability and implementation, pumped storage and Li-ion battery storage systems easily become the best energy storage options in the subcontinent region. Subsequently, the locations of specific storage installations in the overall model regions are also to be determined both with the availability of identified potentials (pumped hydro), and the several existing published information on energy storage (battery installations) in the region. In the next step, two scenarios for the integration of around 20 GW of energy storage capacities are designed in the scope of this study, with focus on the two storage technologies. A unique techno-economic simulation model ATLANTIS_India [7], developed at the Institute of Electricity Economics and Energy Innovation, Graz University of Technology has been then used to simulate the two defined scenarios as close to reality as possible
Finally, the wide spectrum of simulation results ranging from electricity prices, capital stock evaluations, to load flows in the transmission network are analysed, and the two scenarios are evaluated in detail. Several conclusions are then to be derived from the evaluations of the simulation results.


Conference16. Symposium Energieinnovation - ENERGY FOR FUTURE - Wege zur Klimaneutralität
Abbreviated titleEnInnov 2020
Internet address


  • Indian subcontinent
  • Renewable energy systems
  • SDG 2030
  • Energy Storage Systems
  • Techno-Economics


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