India’s Tata Steel begins hydrogen gas injection trial in blast furnace

BENGALURU (Reuters) – Indian steel maker Tata Steel Ltd on Monday said it initiated trial for injecting hydrogen gas at its blast furnace in the company’s flagship plant, in a move to reduce metallurgical coke usage and cut carbon emissions.

The company commenced the trial injection at the plant in the eastern city of Jamshedpur, using 40% of the injection systems on Sunday, Tata Steel said in a statement.

“This is the first time in the world that such a large quantity of hydrogen gas is being continuously injected in a blast furnace,” the company, which aims to become net zero by 2045, said.

The trial, expected to continue for four to five days on a continuous basis, has the potential to reduce coke rate by 10%, translating into a 7% to 10% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions per ton of crude steel produced, it added.

The trial will provide insights into operating blast furnaces with greener fuel injectants, reducing fossil fuel consumption and subsequent CO2 emissions from the blast furnace, the company said.

The move to use hydrogen comes as India has set green hydrogen consumption targets for some industries like steel, in order to generate demand for cleaner fuel in its quest to reach net zero by 2070.

(Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Varun H K)