[: en] Vale, Kobe Steel, Mitsui are planning an enterprise for the production of low-carbon steelmaking technologies

[: en] Japanese steel mill Kobe Steel and Japanese trading company Mitsui & Co. will collaborate to provide metallurgy and low CO2 steel solutions for the global steel industry.

Vale said the agreement sets out the preconditions for a new venture to supply low-CO2 metals. “The appraisal period has already begun to deepen the collaboration and assess the market demand for several existing and new steel solutions pending a final agreement on the new venture,” the statement said.

Vale is committed to doing its part with its steelmakers to meet this carbon footprint reduction challenge. “The new facility will use existing and new low CO2 iron technologies such as Tecnored Technology and Midrex Process,” she added.

Tecnored is a 100% subsidiary of Vale in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, specializing in the development of a low CO2 pig iron production process using alternative energy sources such as biomass, syngas and hydrogen, which emit less CO2 than coal and coke. The traditional iron making process uses. “By using biomass, the path to economic carbon neutrality can be achieved in the medium term,” Weil said.

The Midrex process, wholly owned by US subsidiary Kobe Steel, is the world’s leading direct reduced iron technology, with Midrex smelters producing over 60% of the world’s direct reduced iron (DRI).

“Because the Midrex process uses natural gas [or gas derived from coal] to recover iron ore used in steelmaking, its CO2 emissions are lower than that of a blast furnace,” said the Japanese steelmaker.

Along with these processes, the new joint venture will leverage Mitsui’s marketing and business development know-how to provide low CO2 iron and steel solutions for the global steel industry.

Steelworkers are under increasing pressure to reduce emissions and the availability of a range of iron ore-based products can help.

“In five years, the shipping market will begin to shrink, and in ten years it will be highly contested,” Vale Day CFO Luciano Xiani said at a Vale Day event in London late last year. “We are expanding our technology market and resources to be ready for what comes next.”

In Europe and the USA, a faster rate of change is observed from the use of blast furnaces (using coal and iron ore) to the use of EAFs, which usually use scrap steel as the main raw material, but also increasingly use HBI and pig iron. ,

HBI is an easily transportable form of DRI and pig iron can also be used as an alternative to iron ore in blast furnaces. These are high iron products that enable integrated steelmakers to reduce the use of metallurgical coal for coke production, thereby reducing carbon emissions.

Midrex CEO Stephen Montague said the company “is delighted to provide Midrex technology using natural gas and hydrogen to help steelmakers reduce CO2 emissions and move away from legacy blast furnace technology.”

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