Coal India kicks off pilot LNG conversion project

State-owned Coal India, the world’s largest coal mining firm, has started a pilot project as it looks to convert diesel-powered heavy mining equipment to run on LNG.

To remind, the firm said earlier this year it had teamed up with India’s state-owned Gail, heavy equipment manufacturer BEML, and Cummins to explore converting its huge fleet of heavy machines to run on LNG in order to slash emissions and costs.

The firm has started retrofitting two of its large mining trucks working at its unit Mahanadi Coalfields, according to a statement by India’s coal ministry on Wednesday.

Coal India has signed a memorandum of understanding with GAIL and BEML to jointly work on this pilot project.

Once the partners finalize the conversion works, the dumpers would run on both LNG and diesel, “significantly” reducing emissions, the statement said.

Coal India will test the vehicles for 90 days in different load and operating conditions.

Following the completion of the pilot project, the firm will decide on further conversions but it also aims to buy LNG-powered vehicles. The company has over 2,500 dumpers working in its coal mines.

With this move and other initiatives, Coal India is looking to offset 250,000t of carbon in the next five years, it previously said.

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