India Runs 1st Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus, Made by Tata Motors for IOCL

Union Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Housing & Urban Affairs Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri, flagged-off first Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus from Kartavya Path, New Delhi, on Monday.

The fuel cell utilizes Hydrogen and air to generate electricity to power the bus and the only by-product from the bus is water therefore making it possibly the most environmentally friendly mode of transportation.

These Hydrogen Fuel Cell powered (FCEV) buses are built at a dedicated lab in Tata Motors’ world class R&D centre at Pune. The FCEV buses are 12-metre long and designed for easy ingress and egress with a low-floor design, can seat 35 passengers and were delivered after successful strenuous road tests and validations.

India Runs 1st Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus, Made by Tata Motors for IOCL

India Runs 1st Green Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus, Made by Tata Motors for IOCL

In June 2021, Tata Motors had won a tender from Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL) to provide 15 FCEV buses to evaluate the potential of hydrogen-based PEM fuel-cell technology in India. These buses are to be assessed as potential mass transport solution for inter and intra-city commute.

For FCEV buses, Tata Motors acquired the expertise from renowned industry partners and research institutions, for adapting the advanced hydrogen-based proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology to Indian conditions, and has played a key role in developing the buses.

It was in August of last year when India’s first truly indigenously developed Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus was unveiled however it wasn't ran on streets for passengers and was for trials only. Developed by CSIR and KPIT in Pune, the technology of FCEV buses were later transferred for commercialization to Tata Motors.

Speaking about the Government’s ambitious plans on clean and green energy, Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that emerging fuels like hydrogen and bio-fuels shall account for 25% of global incremental energy demand growth over the next two decades.

“With one of the largest synchronous grids in the world, we have achieved ‘One Nation-One Grid-One Frequency’, and would soon be global champion in production and exports of Hydrogen and is set to emerge as the Hub for green hydrogen”, he added.

The Petroleum Minister further complimented Industry and Government’s collaboration in taking India on a global platform and ensuring that it becomes a global hub for cleaner technologies and achieving self-reliance in energy soon. He said, “We were privy to the launch of the world’s first BS 6 (Stage II) Electrified Flex Fuel vehicle prototype that encompasses both the flex fuel engine as well as an electric powertrain that offers higher use of ethanol combined with better fuel efficiencies. Now with flagging-off the first two hydrogen cell buses, we have set the ball rolling and expect another 15 such buses to ply on Delhi NCR roads by the end of this year”

Speaking about the successful deployment of first-of-its-kind FCEV bus, Mr. Girish Wagh, Executive Director, Tata Motors, said, “This is an outcome of the progressive policies of the Government, IOCL’s focus on future readiness and Tata Motors’ R&D prowess, all collaborating to fulfil the common vision of clean mobility in India. The delivery of the FCEV buses to IOCL marks a significant step forward in this journey and we are grateful for the trust and support of our partners. At Tata Motors, we always prioritise nation building and are leading the global megatrend of sustainable, connected, and safer mobility in the country. The delivery of these buses today heralds a new era in inter-city mass public transport and marks another step forward towards fulfilling the aspiration of sustainable mobility. With proactive actions to develop and adapt new age technologies, we are creating future-ready transport solutions for both cargo and people to address the mobility needs of tomorrow’s India, today.”

IOCL is extensively working towards incorporating hydrogen as next fuel for ditching fossil fuel based petrol & diesel. In in July 2021, Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOC) announced that it is building India's first 'Green Hydrogen' plant at its Mathura refinery. Later, after a year IOCL signed a binding term sheet with Larsen & Toubro (L&T) and ReNew Power (ReNew) to set up a Joint Venture (JV) company that will develop the green hydrogen sector in India.

Besides Govt agencies like IOCL and Bharat Petroleum, private companies are also running for Hydrogen. Few months back, Mukesh Ambani led Reliance Industries announced its partnership with BharatBenz, a subsidiary of Mercedes-Benz’s sister company Daimler Truck AG to unveil India's first intercity luxury concept coach powered by Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology. It's currently in concept stage.


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