PLATIS - a project for fossil-free heating in the steel industry
 

A new process will be developed and tested with the aim to replace fossil fuels in steel industry´s furnaces. The Swedish Steel Association, Jernkontoret, owns the project and it´s led by Triple Steelix. The project will investigate, test and evaluate plasma as a possible technology to make the processes fossil-free. The Swedish Energy Agency believes that PLATIS could contribute to technological advancement for heating processes outside the steel industry as well.

Hofors-based development company ScanArc Plasma Technologies AB has been entrusted by the steel industry to test and develop a process that can replace fossil fuels in the steel industry's furnaces. The Swedish Steel Association, Triple Steelix, industrial companies, academia, research institutes and ScanArc joined forces in an application to the Swedish Energy Agency, which has now granted the PLATIS project "Plasma technology in steel industry furnaces”.

- A very important and interesting project for both industry and academia, says Helena Malmqvist, Research Manager at the Swedish Steel Association.

The purpose of the project is to replace fossil fuels with plasma technology, a process that converts electrical energy into hot gas. The technology is electricity-based and does not require fossil fuels to meet the steel industry's requirements for high furnace temperatures. The project will investigate, test and evaluate plasma as a possible technology to make the process fossil-free.

The Swedish Steel Association is the project owner and it´s led by Triple Steelix. The project is supported by industry through SSAB Borlänge, SSAB Oxelösund, Höganäs AB, AGA AB, Ovako Sweden AB, Outokumpu Stainless AB, LKAB and Sandvik Materials Technology AB. The Royal Institute of Technology and the research institute Swerim AB contribute with research and development.

- We at Triple Steelix are very happy for the opportunity to lead this innovation project with ScanArc, Jernkontoret and other players. The project participants have high expectations and hopefully we can develop fossil-free heating processes that meet industry requirements, says Nicklas Tarantino project manager for PLATIS.

Almost 20 percent of the steel industry's carbon dioxide emissions can be attributed to furnace processes. The steel industry estimates that about half of the furnace processes can be electrified with conventional technology. Other heating processes have an excessively challenging furnace atmosphere to be able to electrify with available methods. One possible solution is electrification with plasma technology, where hot gas creates the required atmospheric and temperature conditions.

- The method can provide the steel industry with cost-effective solutions and faster transition, but the project must prove that, Nicklas Tarantino explains.
The project duration is January 2020 to June 2021, with a total budget of € 450 000. The Swedish Energy Agency believes that PLATIS could contribute to technological advancement for heating processes outside the steel industry as well.

- A successful outcome of the project can lead to new products and services, which in turn can contribute to strengthening Swedish growth and in the joint work for the UN's global sustainability goals, Helena Malmqvist concludes.
The work is carried out with a grant from the Swedish Energy Agency.