HYBRIT will de-carbonize the steel industry
The HYBRIT research project, in which KTH is involved, has received extensive media attention all around the world due to the climate meeting in New York. SSAB was one of few invited companies speaking in the UN to talk about the company, together with LKAB and Vattenfall, try to make the emission-heavy steel industry fossil-free.
Today, the steel industry accounts for as much as 7 percent of the world's CO2 emissions. This stems from coal being used to reduce iron ore during the steel production. In the HYBRIT project, the goal is to replace the fossil carbon with hydrogen. Hydrogen
reacts with iron oxides, and instead of carbon dioxide emissions you get water. In other words, if a heavy industry like the steel industry can be converted, it would have a significant impact on emissions in the world.
However, the emission-free process as a whole depends on how the hydrogen is produced. Today, hydrogen often is produced with fossil energy.
The HYBRIT project was started in 2016 by the energy company Vattenfall, mining company LKAB and the steel giant SSAB. Two years later, KTH in the shape of the Department of Materials Science joined forces to help out finding answers about steelmaking out of hydrogen-reduced iron.
During 2018, work started on the construction of a pilot plant for fossil-free steel production in Luleå. The goal is to have a solution for fossil-free steel by 2035. If successful, HYBRIT means that Sweden’s CO2 emissions can be reduced by 10 percent.