Kiran Gupta, who has three decades of experience in the power sector, is currently chief executive officer (CEO) and executive director, Powerlinks Transmission Limited, a JV between Tata Power Company Limited and Power Grid Corporation of India Limited. Earlier, she worked with Tata Power-DDL, leading diverse areas including engineering, contracts, operations and enforcement, policy advocacy, and performance assurance.
According to Gupta, the power transmission system has gained significance in line with the rising need to evacuate renewable power to load centres, as they need to be connected to the interstate transmission system (ISTS). The installed renewable capacity of 175 GW by 2022 comprises 66.5 GW of capacity to be connected to the ISTS grid. A part of this is already commissioned, and the balance is under implementation.
Major challenges in the transmission sector include huge technical and commercial losses, capital investment, land acquisition, RoW and environmental clearances. “To overcome such challenges, adopting higher voltage levels for the final system, using multicircuit towers for stringing circuits in the future, or using new technology such as HVDC, GIS, etc., would be options for upgradation,” she notes.
Of the total 237 GW of renewable capacity planned in India, 181 GW is identified for development by 2030 in various states, with Rajasthan contributing 75 GW. Additionally, transmission schemes have been planned considering energy storage to meet round-the-clock power needs. Around 51,000 ckt. km of additional transmission lines and 433,575 MVA of substation capacity will be required for ISTS to integrate by 2030.
Gupta takes pride in her current role. “It has provided me ample opportunities to take the company to new heights, with the adoption of digital and technological initiatives, ensuring 100 per cent safe operations and enabling team learning,” adds Gupta.
Gupta’s management style involves working with the team to achieve desired results. She strongly advocates the use of data analysis for decision-making, with an eye on the future needs of the team and the company. She enjoys travelling, doing yoga, gardening, playing carrom and listening to music. Gupta has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Delhi College of Engineering, with a gold medal for outstanding performance. She is also a director on the boards of various Tata Power Group companies.