Indian utility company NTPC has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with GE Gas Power to explore hydrogen co-firing in gas turbines to reduce carbon emissions at its power plant in Gujarat, India.

GE will demonstrate the feasibility of hydrogen co-firing blended with natural gas in GE’s 9E gas turbines, which are installed at NTPC’s 645MW Kawas combined-cycle gas power plant.

GE Gas Power South Asia CEO Deepesh Nanda said: “India’s power landscape is strengthened by the emerging technologies that are at various stages of development and industrial competitiveness.

“Hydrogen has a significant potential to play a complementary role along with other low-to-zero carbon fuels in generating electricity at scale.

“We applaud NTPC’s leadership, commitment, and investment in hydrogen that can further set new industry benchmarks in terms of discovering low-cost hydrogen industry going forward and achieving energy self-reliance.”

The companies will also look to further promote this technology across NTPC’s installed units in India.

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GE Gas Power will evaluate possible changes to be made to the gas turbine unit and auxiliaries required for blending hydrogen with natural gas.

Once completed, a pilot project for 5% co-firing of hydrogen may be implemented at the Kawas gas power plant.

NTPC would provide the required hydrogen for this pilot project.

NTPC Projects director Ujjwal Kanti Bhattacharya said: “This MoU is among the steps we are taking in the direction to meet the objectives under the National Hydrogen Mission.

“As our collaboration with GE grows deeper, we are more focused to use advanced technology and leverage our gas power assets with a higher percentage of zero-carbon fuels such as (hydrogen), as the availability of the fuel becomes viable.”

In August this year, GE Gas Power secured a ten-year service contract for four GT13E2 gas turbines and four generators in Oman.