More than 2 billion tons of steel are produced annually, making it the most important alloy in terms of volume and impact. While steel supports sustainability through lightweight design, magnetic devices and efficient turbines, for example, its primary production does not.
Iron is reduced from ore using carbon. The process generates a staggering 3 billion tons of total direct CO2 emissions amounting to 7% to 9% of all human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.
CAMECA spoke with one of green steel’s pioneers, professor Dierk Raabe, managing director at the Max Plank Institute for Iron Research in Düsseldorf, Germany, on the critically important topic of sustainable steel made with hydrogen. In this article Professor Raabe explains:
- How CO2 emissions can be reduced when replacing carbon with hydrogen or its fossil-free carriers as a reducing agent.
- What progress the R&D and scientific communities are making in understanding the key mechanisms of hydrogen-based direct reduction and hydrogen-based plasma reduction.
- Which bottleneck research questions in green steelmaking are most in need of attention — and more.
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