MECON Sparks Innovation: Tendering Hydrogen for Steel Plant Evolution in India
MECON Sparks Innovation: Tendering Hydrogen for Steel Plant Evolution in India

MECON Sparks Innovation: Tendering Hydrogen for Steel Plant Evolution in India

  • 14-Jun-2024 6:20 PM
  • Journalist: Gabreilla Figueroa

MECON Limited, under Ministry of Steel as Scheme Implementing Agency, has released a tender inviting proposals for the utilization of hydrogen in various steel production processes, including direct reduced iron (DRI) steel pilot plants, existing blast furnaces, and existing DRI vertical shafts. The end date of submission is till 8th July 2024. This opportunity is open to a wide range of entities including CPSUs, state-PSUs, private sector firms, state corporations, Indian R&D institutions, research laboratories, academic institutions, and indigenous equipment design and manufacturing companies.

The Ministry has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking pilot projects focused on hydrogen injection in DRI plants and blast furnaces, with the goal of advancing decarbonization and sustainability efforts. This initiative aligns with the National Green Hydrogen Mission, and MECON has been appointed to oversee project implementation. The program aims to unlock technological advancements and expertise in hydrogen utilization for steelmaking, facilitating large-scale deployment across the industry. Through testing, it will validate the technical and economic viability of Green Hydrogen for low-carbon iron and steel production, while demonstrating safe and secure operational practices.

The steel industry holds a significant promise for integrating green hydrogen as part of its decarbonization efforts, with green hydrogen-based steel expected to become more competitively priced in the coming years. To incentivize the adoption of green hydrogen in the steel sector, the National Green Hydrogen Mission has allocated specific budgetary support totaling INR 4,550 million untill FY 2029-30. MECON Limited, acting as the scheme implementing agency under the National Green Hydrogen Mission, has been tasked by the Ministry of Steel with overseeing these initiatives.

The key focus areas within the scheme for potential support toward developing/selecting/validating commercially viable technologies for hydrogen utilization in the steel sector are outlined as follows:

              Pilot project aimed at producing Direct Reduced Iron (DRI) using 100% hydrogen in vertical shaft furnaces (Scheme-A).

              Incorporating hydrogen in Blast Furnace operations to reduce coal/coke consumption (Scheme-B).

              Introducing hydrogen injection in vertical shaft-based DRI production units to partially substitute natural gas (NG) or other reducing gases, gradually increasing the proportion of hydrogen with the goal of maximizing its usage (Scheme-C).

The overarching objectives of these schemes are to advance technological capabilities and knowledge for hydrogen integration in steelmaking processes, to facilitate the adoption of hydrogen in the iron and steel industry, to validate the technical feasibility and performance of hydrogen in real-world operational settings within iron and steel manufacturing, to assess the economic feasibility of green hydrogen utilization in the Iron and steel sector, to evaluate the performance of low-carbon Iron and steel produced using hydrogen, and to demonstrate the safe and secure operation of hydrogen-based low-carbon iron and steel production.

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