Photo © Klimafonds/ Krobath
In January 2022, the first of three new Oxyfuel ladle furnaces went into operation at the Breitenfeld Edelstahl AG steelworks. The so-called ladle furnaces are used to preheat the steelworks ladles, the transport and treatment vessels for liquid steel, and are responsible for a large part of the natural gas consumption and CO₂ emissions at the EAF steelworks.
The use of Oxyfuel technology, the combustion of natural gas with pure oxygen instead of air, reduces fuel requirements and CO₂ emissions by up to 50 %. In addition, a waste gas with a high CO₂ content is produced, which is to be treated in the further course of the project and used for internal plant processes such as wastewater neutralisation.
The OxySteel project partners Breitenfeld Edelstahl AG, Messer Austria and Montanuniversität Leoben are researching the decarbonisation of EAF steel production through oxyfuel and carbon capture and utilisation technologies as well as by using demand-side-management measures for the integration of renewable energy.