Tata Steel is set to expand its utilization of hydrogen within its steelmaking process following the successful pilot project’s completion at its Jamshedpur plant in Jharkhand, according to T V Narendran, the CEO and MD of the company. In April 2023, Tata Steel initiated a groundbreaking experiment involving the injection of hydrogen gas through 40 per cent of the injection systems in an E-blast furnace at its Jamshedpur steel facility.
Narendran expressed optimism about the outcome, stating, “The results were highly promising, and we intend to amplify this effort. However, the availability of green hydrogen in Eastern India will ultimately dictate its feasibility.” Despite not specifying the extent of the planned hydrogen usage increase, Narendran emphasized that the company aims to scale up the technology.
Introducing hydrogen injection into blast furnaces holds the potential to curtail coal consumption and thereby decrease the carbon footprint associated with steel production. Narendran underscored the significance of the achievement, noting that this marks the first instance worldwide of continuous and substantial hydrogen gas injection into a blast furnace.
Narendran also discussed the company’s operations in the Netherlands, revealing a shift from coal to gas to hydrogen. He highlighted the transition’s importance, given that Tata Steel Netherlands is anticipated to become one of the largest hydrogen consumers in the country. Narendran emphasized that hydrogen is pivotal to the steel industry’s journey toward a more sustainable future. Similar to coal, hydrogen not only serves as an energy source but also contributes as an emission-reducing agent during steel manufacturing.
It’s worth noting that the steel sector contributes approximately 8 percent to the global carbon footprint.