Railways using CNG soon reality in Gujarat

Vol 17, PW 24 (17 Jul 14) Midstream & Downstream

Imagine the market for gas sales if all India's trains began using CNG as fuel.

First Indraprastha Gas (IGL) tried it with Northern Railways, now Ahmedabad-based Adani Gas is planning to sell CNG to Western Railways by setting up Gujarat's first CNG station for trains. Adani wrote to Western Railways on July 3 to finalise land for the CNG station.

“Western Railways is identifying the location,” says an Adani source. “They are very interested in this project and so are we.

Challenges will include laying pipelines under railway tracks and dealing with central government.” Together the two companies are working to convert up to 30 trains to run on CNG to replace expensive diesel engines.

And they're moving fast, unlike most Indian trains. A senior divisional mechanical engineer from Western Railways first wrote to Adani in May asking for CNG.

This was followed by a meeting between the two companies at the Divisional Railway Manager office in Ahmedabad. Adani needs 600-sq metres of land for a CNG station at the Kankaria yard near Kalupur railway station in Ahmedabad and will initially supply 10,000 cm/d R-LNG but is hoping to eventually get a domestic gas allocation from the oil ministry in line with CGD guidelines issued last November.

Trains using CNG will run within a 300-km radius of Ahmedabad to places like Abu, Patan, Anand, Wankaner, Morbi, Petlad and Khambat.