Scientific services


Advance Computing Center (ACC) acts as central resource to all high end hardware and computational software requirements of NETRA. It was established to enable high performance computational environment, in which large, interdisciplinary teams of NTPC scientists and engineers address solutions in energy sciences requiring massive computations and simulations.

Advance Computing Center has setup High-End Servers and Workstations for simulation and modeling in the area of energy research. Various applications in the area of simulation modeling such as Ansys CFD, StarCCM, CHEMCAD are installed. A Solar Radiation Measurement station is setup in Advance Computing Center. It is used for measurement of Sun radiation parameters for Solar Power Plants.

Advance Computing Center has also developed software package NePPS (NETRA e-Power Plant Solutions), which is an Artificial Intelligence (AI), based operator advisory system for real time performance improvement and provides boiler efficiency, TGHR, GCV in real time.

Analytical lab helps in giving scientific support to power plants by chemical characterizing the various deposits available on the plant components which ultimately becomes one of the reasons for its failure. It helps in finding out the sources & causes of deposit formation and suggestion for remedial measures. Monitoring of effluent water like main plant effluent, ash pond effluent and sewage treatment plant effluent for heavy metals as per the guideline of IS/ASTM/APHA. Chemical characterization of fly ash and cenosphere for its uses.

Creep Lab

Ageing high temperature power plant components needs to be periodically assessed for their remaining creep life to prevent unforeseen failures and for their life extension beyond the design life. Creep is a time-dependent deformation phenomenon occurring at stresses well below the yield stress and at temperatures in excess of 0.4 times melting temperature (Tm) in degrees absolute. Due to thermal activation, materials slowly and continuously deform even under constant load (stress) and eventually fail. Hence, one of the most critical factors determining the integrity of elevated-temperature components is their creep behaviour.


Coal and combustion lab of NETRA is NABL accredited and has state of the art facility for both basic and advanced level coal characterization. This includes proximate analysis, ultimate analysis (C,H,N,S&O), ash fusion temperature profiling (Initial deformation temperature, hemispherical temperature & flow temperature), Heating microscope with automatic image analysis, Gross calorific value, thermal reactivity & kinetics, Abrasion Index, HGI, particle size analysis (0.1-1000µ) &flowabilty of fly ash. Other facilities advanced characterization facilities include Themo-mechanical analysis (TMA), porosity meter for porosity of coal & Helium based pycnometer for evaluating the true density of coal.


Corrosion Analysis & Research Lab (an NABL Accredited Lab) provides technical solution on Boiler water chemistry and Cooling water system, corrosion and scaling issues of Condenser, auxiliary cooling water system, closed cooling water system, corrosion behaviour of material in aqueous system, Acid dew point corrosion of HRSG, corrosion related failure analysis of Power Plant components and other allied industries, inspection of different systems for corrosion/fouling/bio fouling. Also providing services for selection of Paints and Coating for Power Plant and Cathodic Protection and Corrosion Audit

Electrical Laboratory, NETRA has been providing high-end scientific support to NTPC Stations in condition monitoring, life assessment and failure analysis of Electrical Equipments. It has specialized testing instruments like Sweep Frequency Response Analyzer(SFRA), Corona Detection Camera and Frequency Domain Spectroscopy(FDS) for detecting faults which may affect reliable continuous operation of a power plant. Electrical Laboratory at NETRA is an NABL Certified Laboratory.

The Electrical Laboratory group has developed a considerable expertise in Transformer condition monitoring. The group has many service credentials to its name in which its timely analysis and advice have saved equipment’s and forced outages. It has many publications in reputed national and international journals and conferences. Apart from this, the Group is actively involved with Corporate OS for consultancy, inspection and failure analysis of equipment’s at NTPC Stations.

It has now undertaken the process of acquiring new instruments for Switch-yard and Generator condition monitoring to enhance its support activities to stations. It is also developing an Insulation Research Facility for studying the ageing characteristics of various solid and liquid insulations.

Environment Science Laboratory, NETRA has been providing high-end analytical and scientific support to NTPC Stations in Stack monitoring and Effluent monitoring as per statutory norms, Operational performance assessment of sewage treatment plants, Waste water recycling, Projects related to fly ash utilization etc. It has specialized testing instruments for identifying environmental problems which may affect reliable continuous operation of a power plant. Environment Science Lab is in the process of acquiring sophisticated instruments like Mercury analyser for detection of ultra-trace mercury in Coal, ash and effluent samples to enhance its environment support activities to stations. Apart from this, the Group is actively involved in Fly ash utilisation research projects in collaboration with CPRI laboratory etc. The group has many service credentials to its name in which its timely analysis and advice have solved critical issues of NTPC power plants as well as outside NTPC. At the same time, it is maintaining NABL Certified Laboratory for Environmental parameters monitoring of the thermal power plant.


Metallurgy & Failure Analysis Laboratory, NETRA has been providing high-end scientific support to NTPC Stations in the area of failure analysis and condition assessment of various power plant components. The laboratory is equipped with metallurgical equipment like precision cutting machine, automatic mounting & polishing machines, electrolytic etching / polishing machine, simple lab microscope, stereo-microscope, ultrasonic cleaning machine for sample preparation. Further state-of-art optical metallurgical microscopes for observing the microstructural features and micro-hardness testing machine are available in the laboratory.

Metallurgy & Failure Analysis Laboratory is in the process of acquiring sophisticated instruments like optical emission spectrometer, state-of-art metallurgical equipment for advanced ultra super critical boiler components to augment the existing facilities and enhance research & development capabilities of the laboratory. The laboratory also involves in dissemination of knowledge in the form of workshops and sharing of laboratory experience. The group has many service credentials to its name in which its timely analysis and advice have solved critical issues of NTPC power plants as well as other SEBs including few international cases. Metallurgy & Failure Analysis Laboratory is NABL Certified Laboratory under ISO17025:2005 Electron Microscopy Laboratory:

A state-of-art Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) attached with Energy Dispersive X-ray analyzer is available for aiding in failure analysis. The equipment is used in :

1. Study of fracture surfaces of failed components
2. Identification of the type and nature of failure
3. Topography & morphology of the surfaces
4. Study structural changes during heating (limited)
5. Phase contrast in metals and alloys
6. Identification of elemental composition such as inclusions, grain boundary phases and particles

Laboratory is in the process of acquiring Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) for the study of advanced materials


Nano and X-ray diffraction (XRD) laboratory is providing specialised analysis and interpretation services for O&M of power plants. The laboratory is well equipped with advanced X-ray facilities for rapid analysis and interpretation of various crystalline materials like coal & ash, water &fire side deposits and root cause of clinkering problem etc. in NTPC power plants and other power utilities in India. Facilities are available for particle size distribution in nano and micron range and for evaluation of erosion wear resistance of materials at ambient and elevated temperatures (800°C).

The group is also working on efficiency improvement of power plant equipments and processes through technology development and its adaptation through in-house R&D and collaboration.


The Group is engaged in providing NDE & Life Management service such as health assessment and life extension activities of various critical components such as High Pressure, High Temperature Pipelines & Headers, tubing, turbine components of coal based power plants and of hot gas path components of Gas Turbine. Members of the group have a rich experience in solving specialised NDE problems of power plant components. NETRA is a Central Boiler Board (CBB) certified agency for “well known remnant life assessment”. NDE group also has NABL accreditation. The group has highly qualified members with ASNT level-III in Ultrasonic Testing (UT), Magnetic Testing (MT), Penetrant Testing (PT), Eddy Current Testing (ECT). NDT lab of NETRA also engaged in providing training to site executives in conventional as well as advanced NDT technique.


Sensor & Robotics Lab is equipped with advanced instruments with an aim to develop and deploy technological solutions in the field of sensing, electronics circuit design,electronics card repair, data acquisition, signal analysis, automation and Robotics. Apart from research projects, Sensors & Robotics lab also provides services to the station like repairing of Electronics card, Instrument, Robotic Inspection of boiler tubes in different plants. Capabilities

  • Customized sensor development for power plant application.
  • Robotic solutions for remote inspection in critical areas of power plant.
  • Data Acquisition and monitoring different sensors in a network.
  • Design and Simulation of the electrical and electronics circuit in Electronic Circuit Design Software.
  • Development of Electronics circuits and cards for controls of mechanical and electrical drives in plant.
  • Repair of old and obsolete Control and Instrumentation cards.
  • Repair of Instruments.


Health assessment of HV transformers is a vital part towards reliable operation for any thermal power plant. The liquid dielectric media inside a transformer carries all information related to healthiness or fault symptoms generated within the system. NTPC-NETRA has established its transformer oil testing laboratory, equipped with sophisticated equipment’s to carry out relevant diagnostic tests that are extremely helpful to adjudge functional health of an energized transformer. Transformer oil testing laboratory carries out important tests like Dissolved gas analysis (DGA), Power dissipation factor (Tan δ), Specific resistance, Break down voltage (BDV), in addition to routine tests (viz., Moisture content, acidity, colour of oil, Flash Point, IFT, Density, Viscosity etc.) as per ASTM / IEC standards This NABL accredited laboratory of NTPC-NETRA has total facility of test requirement for transformer oil as per IS-1866. Specialized tests like, Degree of polymerization of kraft paper, Furfural content in transformer oil, PNA evaluation for base oil composition, etc. have been developed and such services are extended to our external customers as well.


To provide accelerated & comprehensive solution for generic & specific problems from stations in water steam cycle (from PT to boiler), accordingly resources are to be created in terms of state of art facilities, upgraded technology & skilled manpower. In-house or collaborative research to develop the tools & products to enhance the sustainability, and reliability & availability of Chemistry Systems all across the operating stations. To carry out in-hose & collaborative research on production & utilization of hydrogen to develop technologies for contributing as efficient alternative energy source.