Tata Steel Sprint to Zero

7 Jul – 8 Sept 2023 | India

7 July 2023 - 8 September 2023


Tata Steel Sprint to Zero

Welcome to the Tata Steel Sprint to Zero !

Greening of industrial sector with focus on steel through cost effective hydrogen

Proposal submission deadline: 31 August 2023

The British High Commission, New Delhi along with Tata Steel, India is delighted to announce that a £80,000 funding call which is now open for applications for innovative projects in the low carbon Hydrogen that address the challenges of greening the industrial sector in India. Up to £80,000 would be awarded to two successful bids; Tata Steel will offer experiential engagement to selected entities including a priority access to Tata Steel’s integrated steel plant visit.

The grants are for projects lasting 9-12 months, starting around November 2023. Tata Steel may consider funding other bids of merit and further money if required by the chosen successful bidders to validate the technology proposition at their discretion. Tata Steel may also consider short term, early TRL, small budget proposals, however the proposed solution should be minimum at pilot stage.

The Tata Steel Pilot Sprint 2023 will fund innovative research and development projects in low carbon hydrogen that propose tech led or tech enabled solutions to address Green Hydrogen technologies for greening the industrial sector for sustainable future.

This represents the UK and India’s commitment to work together as per the commitments under the 2030 roadmap and the announcement of collaboration on Hydrogen in the PM – PM joint announcement of 2022.

Tata Steel is focused on identification of technologies related to electrolysers and fuel cell technologies, biomass, or enhancing battery storage capacity and improving manufacturing capabilities. This is most relevant to the organization’s or the sector’s needs.

Please contact - Babita.Sharma@fcdo.gov.uk for any questions related to the sprint.

We have two challenges for you and you have to choose any one of them.

Challenge Statement 1

We are looking for proposals that meet the primary criteria of addressing development and deployment of Hydrogen technologies in greening the industrial sector; the technology interventions that we are seeking should address the Greening the industrial sector.

Although critical for economic growth, the iron and steel sector are energy and resource intensive. Rapid growth of steel demand, using conventional Blast Furnace (BF) -Basic Oxygen Furnace (BOF) methods will have significant environmental consequences. There is a growing need to reduce CO2 emissions from iron & steel production with a goal to prevent the worst effects of climate change. Clean hydrogen offers a decarbonization solution to the Carbon intensive steel industry.

At present, although clean hydrogen is gaining traction across industries, it still faces numerous challenges like high operational costs and energy losses.

Thus to address the problem in a holistic way, Tata Steel is looking for a cleaner version which is “blue” hydrogen, for which the carbon emissions are captured and stored, or reused or else the cleanest one of all i.e., “green” hydrogen, which is generated by renewable energy sources without producing carbon emissions in the first place.

  1. Generated through novel and cost-effective pathways;

  2. Usage in iron and steelmaking processes;

  3. Assist in reinforcing the commitments to United Nations Sustainable development Goals.

Challenge Statement 2

Solutions for Hydrogen Storage / Purification :

Fossil fuels are now the most important sources of energy. However, the world is moving towards alternate energy source as the fuel sources are fast running out and by-products of the combustion of such fuels are not environment friendly.

Problem :

If we focus on hydrogen as a green fuel, we will have to ensure the following:

  • Safe level of hydrogen permeation through the storage material

  • Minimization of the degeneration of the container material involved through its possible chemical reactions with or in presence of the hydrogen fuel.

  • For the purification process, stability and performance of membranes under long-term operational conditions should be well established.

Looking Forward:

Permeabilty : Low hydrogen permeabilty of the material at various temperatures and pressures, as function of the composition of the composite material. This low permeabilty should be present at all usable physical conditions of the material used for storage.

Durability : The material should possess high toughness and good thermal stability. Also it  should possess fatigue resistant properties to tensile and bending stress. There should be moderate tensile strength during winding and the material must be resistant to chemical corrosion. These properties to secure the durability should also remain functional in time

Purification : The measurement of gas separation performances using different mixed gases is desirable as size of different gas molecules has a significant impact on separation performance. The graphene-membranes should be fabricated and tested in the industrial module platforms, such as hollow fibres and wounded spirals, which are the most popular configurations for gas separation application.

In general, the material should be of low cost, light-weight with low density and should possess the same properties in all controlled testing environments


The funding call is open for solutions from academia, start-ups and industries across India and UK. Projects must be co - led by an Indian or a UK organisation; with a maximum of three partners per project, where at least one organisation must be either from the UK or India, with a strong academic, research and development background.

Grants will be awarded to a lead organisation which clearly needs to be identified in the proposal. Applicants must demonstrate collaboration with other organisations. Applicants will need to explain how their proposal will facilitate the development of partnerships between researchers, industry (including but not limited to start-ups, scale-ups and small & medium enterprises), and potentially NGOs, policymakers and practitioners in India and counterparts abroad. Consortia must be composed as follows:


  • A university research department or research institute or professional academic

  • At least one of these organisations must have a base either in India or the UK.


  • UK or Indian business (including but not limited to start-ups, scale-ups and small & medium enterprises)


  • Overseas or a non-commercial organisation

The lead organisation will be responsible for the overall management of the grant including control, disbursement and assurance of funds.