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India’s Hydrogen Roadmap: 1M Hydrogen Vehicles and 1,000 MW Hydrogen Power by 2020

Tata Handing Over the H2 Roadmap

The Indian national steering group on hydrogen energy, headed by industrialist Ratan Tata, has developed a roadmap to have 1 million hydrogen-fueled vehicles—combustion-engine as well as fuel-cell vehicles—on Indian roads by 2020 and to generate 1,000 MW of power through hydrogen-fueled plants.

Tata presented the National Hydrogen Energy Roadmap, which entails an investment of Rs 25,000 crore (US$5.5 billion) to the Minister for Non-Conventional Energy Sources, Vilas Muttemwar.

The whole world, and certainly India, will face increasing shortage of hydrocarbons and so we have to look at alternative forms of energy. The document reflects the problems and attempts to define a roadmap.

—Ratan Tata

The Road Map examines different aspects of the problem including production, storage, transport, delivery, applications, safety, standards and codes, capacity building and awareness.

The Road Map has proposed two major initiatives: the Green Initiative for Future Transport (GIFT) and the Green Initiative for Power Generation (GIP).

The Green Initiative for Future Transport aims to develop and to demonstrate hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engine and fuel-cell vehicles ranging from small two/three wheelers, cars and taxis, to buses and vans.

The Green Initiative for Power Generation envisages developing and demonstrating hydrogen-powered internal combustion engine/turbine and fuel-cell based decentralized power generating systems.

The roadmap highlights hydrogen production as a key area of focus, noting the need for urgent development of hydrogen production from coal gasification, nuclear energy, biomass, biological and renewable energy methods in addition to existing methods of steam methane reformation.

Of the projected cost, the majority (about 96%) would be allocated for creating infrastructure for hydrogen production, storage, transportation and distribution for meeting requirements of hydrogen under GIFT and GIP initiatives. The Road Map has recommended strong public private partnership covering the total hydrogen energy system for the implementation of its proposals.

The Steering Group under the Chairmanship of Shri Ratan Tata was constituted on 23rd February, 2004 during the first meeting of the National Hydrogen Energy Board.

India ranks fifth in the world in terms of energy consumption, and experienced an average annual growth rate in energy consumption of about 6% during 1981–2002. India is also one of the sixteen founding members of the International Partnership on Hydrogen Economy, established in November, 2003.




"hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engine" how far can these things go?


Well, depends on storage capacity and size of engine. The prototype hdyrogen ICE three-wheeler built by ECD Ovonics and Bajaj Auto had a test range of 130 km (81 miles) per 900 gm of hydrogen. (Earlier post.)


Hydrogens downside is it takes up alot of room BUT its upside is its very light. For trucks and planes its a win. A plane using hydrogen liquid can save 50 tons of fuel weight EVEN considering the massive tanks needed.

A truck has plenty of room under the container for tanks.

Its only when you get to small cars that room for a tank becomes an issue.

Jesse Jenkins

Why are they focusing on 2,000 MW of hydrogen produced electricity? Hydrogen is a fuel not an energy source and making hydrogen via natural gas reformation or electrolysis to then generate electricity is a loss compared to simply generating electricity with the nat gas or utilizing the electricity used in electorysis.

I really hope they mean 2,000 MW of distributed home or industry scale fuel cells with combined-heat and power applications because this is the only way that making electricity from hydrogen makes sense - I guess the other way would be as load-leveling energy storage for some intermittent power source like wind or solar.

If they are talking about building 2,000 MW of central power plants running on hydrogen, that's just plain silly.

Jesse Jenkins

sorry, make the 1,000 MW of hydrogen produced electricity. I misquoted the article...

tom deplume

Averages out to about one watt per Hindu.


Well, i am sure they are not stupid. Who knows what they will do.


Well stationary fuel cells are a massively growing buissiness and they are very mature tech.

They most likely intend to generate the hydrogen in one place or a few places and then use it to make eltric power in many places via these standard fuel cell stations.

I assume part of the plan is a hydrogen gas piping system much like how nat gas is supplied.

little shop

Great idea, now where are we going to get the 3.2gigawatts of power for all of this? If its wind or solar I am happy.

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