Delta Electronics explores India’s renewable energy landscape from lithium batteries to green hydrogen


How is your containerized data center solution powered? For remote areas where grid electricity is not available, does it provide the option for renewable energy integration? 

With the innovation happening and the technology taking another leap, the integration of renewable sources is becoming more relevant, more sustainable, and also cost-effective. The returns of investment into renewables are also becoming possible now as India has started to produce solar panels and other components. So now the business case of deploying a renewable or integrating a renewable energy source into the solutions that go into the remote areas is becoming more and more prominent. We can see that happening in telecom.

Currently, our containerized data center solution is powered by grid supply. When the grid supply is not available, we have the battery as a second solution, and when the battery exhausts, we have to switch over to the generators at this moment.

Do you manufacture lithium batteries in India?

We have started our new business to produce lithium batteries in India. We already have a large facility of lithium-ion batteries in Taiwan, which is a business that we acquired from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in 2014 and moved their manufacturing plant from Japan to Taiwan. It’s a very highly automated plant.

And with that learning of almost 8-9 years, now we have started to produce lithium-ion batteries in India. However, for lithium-ion battery production in India, we still import the battery module cells from our global factories. Gradually, when the business and the volumes grow, we’ll start to think about producing cells as well.

What are your plans for solar energy storage solutions?

The first and foremost application where we are using the lithium-ion battery is telecom. And in telecom, we have a large market share with over 1 million installations done over around 700K towers in the country. All these 1 million installations require a battery backup.

For the batteries that we are producing at our Krishnagiri plant in Tamil Nadu, telecom is one of the first applications that we’re trying to serve. Besides that, UPS also need a lithium-ion battery solution and people are now graduating from the normal conventional VRLA batteries to lithium-ion batteries. So, that’s the second application [for our li-ion batteries], along with the data center applications. Even here, we use the lithium-ion batteries which we produce by ourselves.

And then gradually, battery energy storage systems will certainly become an area of importance for us. Once we have more competence and more opportunities in the marketplace, of course we’ll see to do that as well because globally we have that competence of doing large MW-scale BESS solutions.

We are frontrunners in adopting LIB technology worldwide. So it’s already in our domain. But, in India, it may take more time as we’re just starting for the telecom power and the data centers.

Delta Electronics manufactures PV inverters in India. What’s your strategy in this segment to counter the competition? 

This is one area where we have been constantly working to develop new designs in terms of central inverters and string inverters. Globally, we have lots of competence, but in India we have developed these solutions right from scratch, going up to MW scale. The first inverter that we designed in India was 1 MW. Now we have a range from very small rating of inverters going up to 2.5 MW.

There are certain innovative designs under R&D in India and also globally. We are a large company, so we have procurement efficiency as well and also lots of components are being done by ourselves in terms of thermal management. With our strengths in manufacturing and scale of procurement, clubbed with a very large domestic market opportunity, I think in the coming times we should be able to attempt to this market more efficiently.

What are Delta Electronics’ green hydrogen plans for India?

Delta Electronics, Inc. has unveiled ambitious green hydrogen plans for India through a groundbreaking collaboration with Ceres Power Limited, a subsidiary of London Stock Exchange-listed Ceres Power Holdings plc. This long-term agreement, valued at approximately GBP43 million, encompasses technology transfer and licensing, granting Delta access to Ceres’ cutting-edge hydrogen energy stack technology portfolio.

As a global leader in power and thermal management, Delta intends to leverage this partnership to integrate Ceres’ energy stack technology with its own advanced power electronics and thermal management technologies. The goal is to develop solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) and solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) systems tailored for hydrogen energy applications. Production of these innovative systems is slated to commence by the end of 2026, signaling Delta’s proactive approach towards green energy solutions.

These SOFC and SOEC systems hold immense potential to revolutionize various sectors in India, including chemicals, energy, transportation, steel, and more. Delta’s strong ambition for future scale-up underscores its commitment to spearheading sustainable development and fostering a greener future in India and beyond.

More and more companies are venturing into electrolyzer manufacturing? What are your strengths in this segment?

As Delta Electronics India, we are planning to enter the electrolyzer manufacturing segment as part of our broader green hydrogen initiatives. Our collaboration with Ceres Power Limited provides us with access to cutting-edge technology in solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) systems, which will be integral to our electrolyzer manufacturing endeavors.

Our entry into this segment is bolstered by several key factors:

Technological expertise: With our extensive experience in power electronics and thermal management, coupled with Ceres’ expertise in SOEC technology, we possess the necessary technical know-how to develop advanced electrolyzer systems.

Strategic partnerships: Our collaboration with Ceres Power Limited enables us to leverage their expertise and intellectual property in hydrogen energy technology, giving us a competitive edge in the electrolyzer manufacturing space.

Production capabilities: Delta Electronics India has a robust manufacturing infrastructure and capabilities, which will facilitate the production and scale-up of electrolyzer systems to meet the growing demand for green hydrogen solutions in India and beyond.

Market demand: There is a rising demand for electrolyzer systems globally, driven by the increasing focus on renewable energy and decarbonization efforts. As a result, Delta Electronics India is well-placed to capitalize on this market demand and contribute to the growth of the green hydrogen economy.

Overall, our strategic positioning, technological capabilities, and market demand align well with our plans to enter the electrolyzer manufacturing segment, allowing us to play a significant role in advancing sustainable energy solutions in India and the broader region.


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