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Tata Motors to supply 15 hydrogen-based PEM fuel cell buses to IOCL

Tata Motors hydrogen fuel cell-powered bus (Source: Tata Motors)

Reiterating its pledge towards sustainable mobility, Tata Motors has announced that it has won a tender to supply 15 hydrogen-based proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell buses from the Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL). IOCL had requested bids for the supply of PEM fuel cell buses in December 2020, and Tata Motors was nominated as the winner following a thorough evaluation process. All 15 buses will be delivered within 144 weeks from the date of signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

In addition to supplying the buses to the Research & Development Centre of IOCL, Tata Motors will also team up with them to undertake R&D projects and mutually study further the potential of Fuel Cell technology for commercial vehicles. This will be done by jointly testing, maintaining, and operating these buses for public transport in real-world conditions in Delhi-NCR. The buses will be refueled by hydrogen, generated, and dispensed by IOCL.

S.M.Vaidya, Chairman, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, stated that Indian Oil has been pioneering the national efforts towards ushering in the hydrogen economy for various applications, including mobility. This 1st of its kind project in the country is bringing the country's largest fuel supplier and largest commercial vehicle manufacturer on board to take the hydrogen & fuel cell technology to the next level. This initiative would also act as a stepping stone for various other key programs, which proposes to introduce hydrogen-based mobility on different iconic routes and important sectors in the country. These futuristic steps are in the right direction for making hydrogen the ultimate net-zero fuel.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Girish Wagh, President, Commercial Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors said, "We are delighted to win this prestigious tender from IOCL for it adds to Tata Motors' rich legacy of introducing future-ready technologies for cleaner and greener public transport. We have successfully supplied 215 EV buses under FAME I and won orders for 600 EV buses under FAME II. This order to supply PEM Fuel Cell buses from a company as respected as Indian Oil Corporation further encourages our ongoing efforts on developing India-focused alternative sustainable fuels to transform the future of mobility in India."

SSV Ramakumar, Director (R&D), while acknowledging Tata Motors Ltd., stated that a lot of hard work has been put in by the Indian Oil R&D team towards conceiving, planning, and executing this joint developmental cum demonstration program with strong support from the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas. Indian Oil through cutting edge R&D is committed to strengthening the production and supply chain of hydrogen energy in India and would be setting up ~1 ton per day hydrogen production pilot plants based on four innovative pathways besides cooperating with Tata Motors for fuel cell research. 

Author : Moulin Oza
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