Talcher Fertilizer plant in Angul district of Odisha will be India’s first plant on Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) Technology. In 1999 Government of India had closed down Talcher Fertilizer plant due to continuous losses based on multiple factors.
After twenty years Talcher unit is being revived by forming Talcher Fertilizers Limited (TFL) which is a Joint Venture (JV) company of Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL), Coal India Limited (CIL), Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers Limited (RCFL) and Fertilizer Corporation of India (FCIL) for development of coal gasification based Ammonia Urea Complex.
Current Status of the Coal Gasification Project
On 17th September China’s Wuhuan Engineering Co Ltd has been awarded lump-sum turnkey (LSTK) contract worth Rs. 13,277 Cr. by Fertilisers Minister D V Sadananda Gowda in the presence of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Fertiliser Secretary Chhabilendra Roul.
Pre-project activities had started last year at the site, including the construction of boundary wall and approach road. Union Cabinet has also approved the proposal for equity investment of Rs 1,033.54 crore for setting up. For further development of the project tendering process is underway and major tenders are expected to be awarded by end of the year. The Coal Gasification based Amonia Urea complex shall create employment for 4,500 people in the area. It is expected to be commissioned by 2023.
About Talcher Fertilizer plant
The Talcher Fertilizer plant is located about 126 km from Bhubaneswar. On 22nd September 2018, Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi had launched the commencement of work for fertilizer plant with petroleum coke (pet coke) blending. The estimated investment in coal gasification based Ammonia Urea Complex is of Rs. 13,000 crore. The envisaged output from Ammonia Urea Complex is 0.73 Million Metric Tonnes Per Annum (MMTPA) / 2,200 Tonnes Per Day (TPD) of Ammonia, 1.27 (MMTPA) / 3,850 TPD of ‘Neem’ coated prilled urea using coal and pet coke as feedstock. Along with ammonia and urea the plant shall produce 95 TPD of sulphur flakes, liquid N2 and dry ice from excessive Co2 as a saleable byproduct. Plus melamine shall be produced from urea.
The plant shall source coal from the Talcher mines, but since the coal has high ash content therefore 25% petroleum coke shall be sourced from Indian Oil’s Paradip refinery, which is 200 km away from the destination. This project shall therefore ease availability of urea in Odisha as there is no urea plant in the state.
UCG Technology shall help to harness untouched, economically unviable sites to extract coal in an environment friendly manner.