ArcelorMittal has commissioned technology provider Midrex Technologies to design a demonstration plant in Hamburg to produce steel with hydrogen.
The Luxembourg steel manufacturer revealed in April it was investigating the use of industrial-scale hydrogen in its production process as part of the company’s strategy to reduce CO2.
ArcelorMittal and Midrex Technologies have signed an agreement to cooperate on several projects, the first to demonstrate in Hamburg the large-scale production and use of Direct Reduced Iron (DRI) made with 100% hydrogen as the reductant.
In the coming years, the demonstration plant will produce about 100,000 tonnes of direct reduced iron per year – initially with grey hydrogen sourced from natural gas.
ArcelorMittal said conversion to green hydrogen from renewable energy sources will take place once available in sufficient quantities and at an economical cost.
Energy for hydrogen production could come from wind farms off the coast of Northern Germany.
The plant will be the world’s first direct reduction plant on an industrial scale, powered by hydrogen.
“We are working with a world class provider, Midrex Technologies, to learn how you can produce virgin iron for steelmaking at a large scale by only using hydrogen,” explained Carl de Maré, Vice-President at ArcelorMittal and responsible for technology strategy.
“This project combined with our ongoing projects on the use of non-fossil carbon and on carbon capture and use is key to become carbon neutral in Europe in 2050.”
“Large scale demonstrations are critical to show our ambition. However it will depend on the political conditions, how fast transformation will take place.”