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India to call stakeholder meeting for specialized cylinders for storing GH2

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India's Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is looking to convene a meeting of stakeholders to discuss the development of specialized cylinders that can store green hydrogen, according to media reports.

Manufacturers of specialized cylinders for compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquified natural gas (LNG), will be among the invitees.

The move follows ministry discussions with commercial vehicles makers, including manufacturers of heavy-duty and long-haul trucks, in January, the Indian Express reported. 

At that meeting, companies had flagged certain challenges in the adoption of green hydrogen for transport purpose. Among their focus areas was the requirement of high-pressure storage cylinders – hydrogen is typically stored at a pressure of between 5,000 and 10,000 psi, more than twice the compression needed for CNG, which is stored at around 3,600 psi – and the higher cost of green hydrogen fuel cells. 

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Gas cylinders can be segmented into four types (Type 1, 2, 3 and 4) depending on the functionality. The MNRE has indicated a meeting with industry stakeholders for the development of Type 3 cylinders, which work for storage and transportation, and Type 4 cylinders, which function for on-board storage.

Domestic manufacturers of CNG cylinders are already on to the opportunity, though. Last month, Confidence Petroleum, a manufacturer of gas cylinders, announced it would manufacture and launch Type 4 cylinders for hydrogen storage.

Large private players such as Time Technoplast, INOX India, and Indoruss Synergy have allocated funds to develop and produce Type 4 cylinders for green hydrogen, while government-controlled Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd is setting up a Centre of Excellence in Varanasi that will handle hydrogen storage cylinders, in addition to other aspects of the fuel.

India is seeking to develop hydrogen-based mobility even as the country takes efforts to shift transportation away from fossil fuels and towards electric mobility. The MNRE is also seperately spearheading a pilot program to run long-haul hydrogen-powered vehicles on five pre-selected routes for 24 months to identify operational issues and technology readiness.  

Greening the transport sector offers enormous benefit for a country looking to achieve net zero by 2070: Union road minister Nitin Gadkari has said the transportation sector is responsible for around 40 percent of the country's total CO2 emissions.  

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