The CoE explores and unlocks the potential of Carbon Capture and Utilization (CCU) technologies to set India on the path to achieving its climate goals and commitments.
The Department of Science & Technology (DST), Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India, has established the National Center of Excellence in Carbon Capture and Utilization (NCOE-CCU) at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay. This Center of Excellence explores and unlocks the potential of Carbon Capture and Utilization (CCU) technologies to set India on the path to achieving its climate goals and commitments.
The Center’s primary focus of research will involve understanding the role of CO2 in the global climate and mitigation strategies of the CO2 emitted from the industrial and energy sector, ranging from advances in capture technologies to subsequent utilization of captured CO2. Priority case studies, experimental investigation, and simulation in different aspects of CCU, and decision-making tools for process optimization and policy development, will be an essential part of the Center’s activities.
The NCOE-CCU, as per an IIT Bombay statement, is the country’s first such Center funded by the DST. It was formally sanctioned in December 2021.
Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage (CCUS) is a crucial climate change mitigation solution that is constantly advancing in its technology readiness levels for operational feasibility and economic viability. A co-benefit application of CCUS is enhanced oil and gas recovery, whereby CO2 is used to increase natural resource production. At the same time, a good part of the CO2 is stored in the subsurface, IIT Bombay statement said.
The statement added that the cross-disciplinary training through the NCOE will develop a deep understanding and problem-oriented approach in next-generation researchers through outreach and capacity building programs.
The NCOE has partnerships with several academic and research institutes (such as other IITs, universities, and CSIR labs) and industries including petroleum, cement, power, and steel. The NCOE will be nodal for state-of-the-art research and application-oriented initiatives in the field of CCUS.
At COP-26, held in Glasgow, the UK, last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered the five ‘Panchamrit’ nectar elements to deal with the climate challenges, including the commitment to become a net-zero emissions nation by 2070. CCUS has often been slated as the apt technological solution to decarbonize the existing and forthcoming energy-intensive industries.
“Decarbonization of ‘hard-to-abate’ industries would require outstanding efforts to achieve the net-zero goals. The National Center shall explore and unlock the potential of CCU technologies to lead India in this potential industrial sector to evolve as a circular carbon economy,” said Professor Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay.
DST aims to nurture the area of Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage through emphasis on research and development, and capacity building of both human resources and infrastructure. The objective is to evolve technologies and methodologies that address issues related to high capital costs, safety, logistics and high auxiliary power consumption.
Globally, power and industry account for about 50% of all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage (CCUS) program aim to reduce carbon emission by either storing or reusing, so that captured carbon dioxide does not enter the atmosphere. The new Center, the IIT Bombay statement said, will act as a multi-disciplinary, long-term research and development, collaboration, and capacity-building hub in Carbon Capture and Utilization.