SWISS specialist chemical company Clariant has announced its participation in the Carbon2Chem project, a cross-industry initiative to reduce CO2 emissions in the steel industry.
The project aims to transform smelting gases from the steel industry into valuable chemicals such as methanol. Smelting gases, which typically contain nitrogen, hydrogen, methane, carbon monoxide, and CO2, are currently only being recycled for power generation in the steel power plants. However, the captured gases could be used as starting materials for manufacturing fuels and fertilisers.
Clariant will contribute methanol catalysts, adsorbents and expertise for gas purification. The company already has experience in obtaining methanol from smelting gases as it participates in the upstream processing of the smelting gases as methanol can only be obtained from smelting gases in purified form.
Clariant has also pledged support to consider the conversion of hydrogen – another smelting by-product gas – to a useful fuel product. However, only relatively small quantities of hydrogen are produced in steel manufacturing.
Carbon2Chem says wind and solar sources can deliver excess electricity to be used for chemical production. The excess renewable electricity will allow for increase hydrogen run off, which is the most sustainable high-energy fuel source to use to break down CO2.
The Carbon2Chem project starts its active phase today, and will be sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research for an initial period of four years. The full concept is expected to be ready for industrial scale use around 2030.
Catch up on the latest news, views and jobs from The Chemical Engineer. Below are the four latest issues. View a wider selection of the archive from within the Magazine section of this site.