India’s largest fuel retailer has entered into an agreement with the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and the Research and Development Centre of Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) to develop and demonstrate biomass gasification-based hydrogen generation technology. The two parties have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for producing fuel cell-grade hydrogen at an affordable price. This collaboration is seen as a step forward in the generation of green hydrogen and is believed to reinforce the promising venture made by Indian Oil’s Research & Development team in the hydrogen economy landscape.

According to the IISc, the agreement will help in bringing hydrogen fuel into India’s mainstream energy matrix with focus on utilising the agrarian strengths of the country.  IOC Chairman S M Vaidya believes that Hydrogen will emerge as the ultimate solution for a sustainable energy future. He said, “The process will help produce fuel cell grade hydrogen at an affordable price and accelerate Indian Oil’s journey towards a sustainable hydrogen economy.”

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Hydrogen-generation technology is viewed as sustainable green mobility solution.  It will provide a cleaner energy option for India and address the challenge of waste biomass disposal, thus improving the ambient air quality. The advantage of fuel cell electric vehicles that are powered by hydrogen is that the can only emit pure water as tailpipe emissions. The Hydrogen generated from the plant will be used in fuel cell buses.  IOC has recently launched the trial of 50 Hydrogen CNG-fuelled buses in Delhi.

According to the signed MoU, Indian Oil will work together with IISc to ensure optimisation of biomass gasification as well as hydrogen purification process. The technology will be scaled-up and demonstrated at Indian Oil’s R&D Centre at Faridabad. The Hydrogen generated will further be used in fuel cell buses as part of the Corporation’s larger aspiration to move towards hydrogen economy in the country.