India has launched its first truly indigenously developed hydrogen fuel cell bus developed by KPIT-CSIR in Pune.
India has launched its first truly indigenously developed hydrogen fuel cell bus developed by KPIT-CSIR in Pune. Dr. Jitendra Singh, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; and MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, said during the launch ceremony that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hydrogen Vision is important for India to ensure Atmanirbhar means of affordable and accessible clean energy, meeting climate change goals, and creating new entrepreneurs and jobs.
Green hydrogen is an excellent clean energy vector that enables deep decarbonization of difficult-to-abate emissions from the refining industry, fertilizer industry, steel industry, cement industry, and also from the heavy commercial transportation sector, he added.
The fuel cell utilizes hydrogen and air to generate electricity to power the bus. The only effluent from the bus is water, making it possibly the most environmentally friendly mode of transportation. For comparison, a single diesel bus plying on long distance routes typically emits 100 tons of CO2 annually; and there are over a million such buses in India.
The high efficiency of fuel cell vehicles and the high energy density of hydrogen ensures that the operational costs in rupees per kilometer for fuel cell trucks and buses are lower than diesel powered vehicles, Dr. Singh said. This can bring freight revolution in India. Moreover, fuel cell vehicles also give zero green-house gas emissions.
The Minister lauded the joint development efforts of KPIT and CSIR-NCL and pointed out that the technology prowess of Indian scientists and engineers is no less than the best in the world and also at much lower costs.
He pointed out that about 12-14% CO2 emissions and particulate emissions come from diesel powered heavy commercial vehicles. Being decentralized emissions, these are difficult to capture. On the other hand, hydrogen-fueled vehicles provide an excellent means to eliminate the on-road emissions from this sector.
By achieving these goals, India can pole-vault from being net importer of fossil energy to becoming net exporter of clean hydrogen energy and thus, providing global leadership to India in hydrogen space by becoming a large green hydrogen producer and supplier of equipment for green hydrogen.
Dr. Singh also inaugurated the Bisphenol-A pilot plant in CSIR-NCL. “These pilot plants have successfully demonstrated novel process technologies developed by NCL under CSIR’s Covid-19 mission program and Bulk Chemicals mission program,” he said. “Bisphenol-A (BPA) is an important feedstock for the production of epoxy resins, polycarbonate and other engineering plastics. The global market for Bisphenol-A is projected to reach 7.1 million tons by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 2% over the analysis period 2020-2027. The entire estimated annual demand of 135,000 tons in India is imported today.”
CSIR-NCL’s technology is expected to enable import substitution of this important raw material and help in India’s Atmanirbhar initiative.