IT Systems Design For Hydro Projects

IT Systems Design For Hydro Projects

Vinod Kotiya, Er.(IT)

Any of the big projects like Loharinag-Pala Hydro Power Project (LPHPP) needs a secure and reliable means of communication for all project executives, contractors, consultants, and vendors to freely share project information from diverse locations while maintaining security and integrity.

Most of us would be agree on this that at the initial phase of each project communication systems and basic infrastructure must be on top priority. Having an efficient and aggressive project plan for communication network will provide maximum teamwork and team interaction which results in lowered development costs and saved project time, thereby reducing the time to complete the project.

Design of IT and communication system should be in following manner:

  • Requirement:
    Design and implement the requirements and efficient way for all executives involved in the project to communicate and collaborate.
  • Solution:
    Design and engineering Information Technology (IT) and telecommunications systems as per requirement. Solution will be designed as per Project needs.
  • Implementation:
    Provide unique connectivity solution used by all team members. Implement and commission all the projects IT systems with continuous monitoring of the network connectivity and other system parameters once execution when project begins.

For Projects at difficult hilly terrains like LPHPP, I would recommend following design and engineering of IT Systems:

  1. Voice Coverage of project area : Reliable voice connectivity must be implemented by setting up small mobile communication network. This can be achieved using Radio Trunking System or Wi – Max. VHF system is not effective for multipoint communication at larger coverage because it works on broadcasting mode.
  2. LDST/DSPT System: For voice communication Long distance satellite telephone based on Ku band is very reliable system. This can be used as gateway for Voice Coverage explained above to communicate globally.
  3. Computer System and LAN: LAPTOP should be preferred than Personal Computers to provide mobility. Wi-Fi LAN would be more effective for LAPTOP. It will also reduce the UPS power and maintenance problems
  4. Tunnel Communication System: For underground excavation work tunnel communication system is required for safety of executives. This can be achieved using DTMF system.
  5. Data Coverage of project area: Ku-BAND VSAT or Satellite Broadband Internet of higher bandwidth (up to 2 MBPS) can be used at various difficult site locations to freely share project data, drawings, and other project-related applications and information. ERP can also be implemented on such system by setting up Private Network while maintaining the security and integrity of all other corporate information.

Satellite Broadband System is good alternative for VSAT which is broadly used in NTPC for mailing and data communication purpose. The voice usage of VSAT is negligible at projects like LPHPP.

Also the corporate e-mail system should be accessible on internet so that every executive can access it at various project area using satellite link. In thermal projects it is easy to access emails on corporate intranet but same ease is not in Hydro due to various site locations.


The IT Systems engineering design require more than 6 different communications systems that would get commissioned on Project. With the installation sandwiched along with contractor's communication system, it is imperative that all tasks be completed on time to avoid construction delays, which in turn would delay the Company's objective. The collaborative IT System network that provides all team members a reliable global connection to a centrally managed project workspace would be helpful to allow access for all involved teams to gather, disseminate, share, and manage the information.

IT System Installed at LPHPP: VHF System, LDST System, Satellite Broadband Internet, Ku band VSAT & Tunnel Communication system in process, LAN/WAN, Web/Mail Server, Antivirus Server, MLLN, Local EPABX/SATCOM/VoIP, Video Conferencing Equipment.

With the reliable connectivity and communication we can get our jobs done.

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