Thermax Ltd is betting big on green and renewable energies as well as cleaner technologies for its traditional boiler business, as it enters a new phase of growth.

The company is pouring in money into research and development and according to Managing Director Ashish Bhandari the aim is to take the R&D spend to about 2 per cent of its revenue from less than 1 per cent now. The R&D, which is scattered now among different businesses, will be consolidated, he said.

The company showcased its innovative solutions at Thermax Fest in Pune.

Some of the innovations on which it is working are electric boilers, using heat exhaust to produce cooling in buses and trucks, coal gasification that involves cleaner use of coal in the iron and steel industry, production of clean chemicals, use of biomass and waste to produce renewable energies and green hydrogen.

It has already won orders worth over ₹500 crore to set up five bio-CNG plants and in the next three years, it has plans to deploy 1 GW of hybrid renewable energy solutions.

Hydrogen electrolysers

The bio-CNG plants to be set up in Rajasthan, Madya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh will use local feedstock as the fuel inputs such as rice straw, Napier grass, cane trash and soya trash. The plants can produce 110 tonnes per day of bio CNG with 1000 tpd of feedstock. The CNG produced will be used commercially as well as for captive purposes.

It has also invested in a biomass-sourcing supply chain for captive consumption to ensure a consistent biomass fuel supply.

In the hydrogen segment that company is looking at the manufacturing of giga-scale electrolysers and is already in active discussions with certain state governments for this.

It will also be looking at hydrogen generation under the build, own, operate model as well as undertake EPC contracts.

Bhandari said that it would take at least a year for it to get anything on the ground.

In coal gas gasification it has set targets to upscale coal gasification plants with capacities ranging from 100 to 500 tpd. Thermax has implemented a pilot gasifier project at its factory in Pune in partnership with IIT Delhi, with support from the Department of Science and Technology. This indigenously developed technology converts high-ash Indian coal into value-added fuels