How does Charm Industrial hope to use the crops to reduce steel emissions?

The iron and industry produces around 4 billion tons of carbon each year, accounting for around 10% of all energy-related climate pollution. 2020 report These numbers have risen sharply this century, driven by rapid economic growth in China and elsewhere.

High emissions and increasingly stringent climate policies in some regions, including Canada and the European Union, are starting to push. a little companies exploring cleaner ways to produce these fundamental building blocks of the modern world.

Swedish joint venture Hybrit delivered its first batch of commercial green steel to Volvo last year. This partnership between steel giant SSAB, state-owned power company Vattenfall and mining company LKAB used a production method based on carbonless hydrogen instead of coal and coke. Other companies are exploring the use of plants that capture carbon dioxide or have similar equipment. Boston Metalby applying completely different electrochemical methods.

Attraction is considering yet another approach. In the back corner of the company’s warehouse, workers use a narrow metal mechanism known as a reformer to react the company’s bio-oil with hot steam and oxygen. This produces what is known as syngas, which is mostly a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen.

pouring bio oil
Bio-oil produced from crop residues.

This could potentially be translated into a single method of producing iron and steel.

The most common form of steelmaking begins with a blast furnace that heats iron ore, limestone and a type of coal, coke, to temperatures above 1,500 ˚C. The resulting carbon-laden metal, known as “pig iron”, is then transported to a second furnace where oxygen is blown, impurities are removed and other materials are added to produce various grades of steel.

Emissions occur at every stage of this process, including the extraction and production of iron, coal and coke; burning fuels to run furnaces; and the chemical reactions occurring in them.

However, today about 7% of non-recycled steel is produced in a different furnace type using what is known as the direct reduction method. It often relies on natural gas to strip oxygen atoms from iron oxide ore in a shaft furnace. This produces what is known as sponge iron, which basically just needs to be melted and mixed with other materials. This second step can be done in what is known as an electric arc furnace that can run on carbon-free power from solar, wind, geothermal or nuclear power plants.

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