H2 Injection Into the Blast Furnace

10 June 2021 • 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

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Following a general review, this second webinar looks specifically at adapting the blast furnace to hydrogen injection, with a general strategy, results from European trials and a discussion panel discussing what paths might be followed.

Presentation 1: Challenges and Opportunities to Use Hydrogen in Blast Furnace Ironmaking
Environmentally friendly green or blue hydrogen is one of the few reductants that can replace coke, injected coal and/or injected natural gas in blast furnace ironmaking. While green and blue hydrogen is not a commercial reality today, blast furnace ironmakers wish to understand how this promising green reductant/fuel can be used in the future. Can hydrogen provide blast furnace steel plants with a path to net zero carbon emissions? Enabling technologies to further reduce CO2 emissions with hydrogen will be described, and limits to potential steel plant CO2 reductions identified. The role of a blast furnace purge gas stream rich in H2 and how this can be deployed within the steel plant to meet the plant energy demands will be discussed. Greater hydrogen use will be a part of green ironmaking over the next 30 years as the hydrogen economy emerges. The enabling technologies that must be developed over the next 20 to 30 years will be discussed

Presentation 2: Injection of Hydrogen and Hydrocarbon Carriers Into the Blast Furnace
The injection of auxiliary reducing agents into the tuyeres of a blast furnace has fundamental effects on the total energy and material balance of the process. The effects of the injected hydrogen and hydrocarbon carriers on the raceway adiabatic flame temperature (RAFT), additional oxygen needed to keep the RAFT on a required level, hot blast volume, shares of direct and indirect reduction, coke consumption, composition and energy content of top gas and its hydrogen content, as well as productivity of the blast furnace, cause considerable changes of the balance results. The injection of auxiliary reducing agents have a cooling effect on the RAFT. The cooling effect increases with increasing amounts of hydrogen in the injectants by the energy demand for cracking hydrocarbon carriers. To avoid freezing the process with increasing injection rates, there is the need to keep the RAFT at a suitable temperature level. This can be achieved by adding oxygen via the hot blast or by injection. The increased hydrogen contents of the tuyere gas have effects on the reduction reactions in the blast furnace. With increasing injection of hydrogen or hydrogen carriers, there is the need to control the hydrogen content of the blast furnace top gas to guarantee safe operation. The use of hydrogen and hydrocarbon carriers in the blast furnace leads to higher coke rates but also to a CO2 mitigation of up to 20% when injecting 40 kg hydrogen per ton of hot metal compared to operation modes with pulverized coal injection.

Presentation 3: The Injection of Hydrogen Into an Industrial Blast Furnace – A Successful Trial and an Outlook
Beginning in 2019, hydrogen has been injected into the Blast Furnace 9 in Duisburg, Germany. This was the world’s first test phase of hydrogen injection into a blast furnace utilized in the industrial production of hot metal at thyssenkrupp’s iron and steel mill. In order to fulfill this goal, one tuyere was modified to use not only pulverized coal as an auxiliary reduction agent but also green hydrogen. Selected results of the trials will be discussed. An outlook of the next step to inject hydrogen into all tuyeres of the same blast furnace beginning in 2022 will be given. This drastically increases the total amount of hydrogen injected into the blast furnace. The impact of the hydrogen on the top gas composition and direct influence on the users of the blast furnace top gas in an integrated iron and steel mill will be identified. The effects of low-density bosh gas and the interconnection to the gas distribution and the tuyere momentum are presented using mapping techniques.

Panel Discussion: Potential paths for North American Blast Furnace H2 injection 


Ian Cameron, Hatch Ltd.
Hans-Bodo Lüngen, Steel Institute VDEh
Peter Schmoele, Consultant
Joseph Poveromo, RMI Global Consulting
Michael Grant, Air Liquide Global Management Services GmbH
Frederik Hippe, thyssenkrupp
Matthias Weinberg, thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG

Ian Cameron Bio
Ian Cameron is the principal metallurgist, Ferrous, at Hatch Ltd. He develops client-focused solutions to produce iron and steel starting from the basic raw materials. He has extensive international experience in ironmaking process technology, plant operations and new technology implementation. His experience includes coke plant, pellet plant and blast furnace design and operations, assessing steel plant carbon footprints, and the implementation/impact of future ironmaking technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Cameron holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in metallurgical engineering from McGill University and is a Professional Engineer in Ontario, Canada. Cameron is the lead author of a new book, Blast Furnace Ironmaking, Analysis, Control and Optimization, where he and his co-authors outline a first principles approach to complete blast furnace heat and mass balances.

Hans-Bodo Lüngen Bio
Hans-Bodo Lüngen studied metallurgy at Technical University of Aachen (RWTH Aachen), Germany. He received his diploma in metallurgy and completed his doctoral thesis on the sintering of iron ores. He joined Steel Institute VDEh in 1985, and currently serves as executive member of the managing board.

Peter Schmoele Bio
Peter Schmoele studied metallurgical science and received a Dr.-Ing. degree from the Technical University Clausthal, Germany. He has been engaged in the steel industry (Hoesch Stahl Dortmund and thyssenkrupp Steel Duisburg) since 1983. His last position was vice president Competence Centre Metallurgy at thyssenkrupp Steel. After retirement at the end of 2019, he has been working as a consultant. Since February 2012, he has been a professor at the Technical University RWTH Aachen and since November 2016 he has served as an honorary member of the blast furnace committee of Steel Institute VDEh.

Joseph Poveromo Bio
Joseph J. Poveromo received his Ph.D. and M.S. degree from the Center for Process Metallurgy at the State University of New York, Buffalo; and his B.S. degree in chemical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic institute. From 1974, he worked at Bethlehem Steel’s Homer Research Laboratories. In 1993, he established his consultancy, Raw Materials & Ironmaking Global Consulting. Through 2008, his principal client was the Quebec Cartier Mining Com, serving as director technology — international. Currently, he consults for steel, iron ore and other natural resources; technology providers; and financial and consultancy companies on a global basis. Poveromo is a Distinguished Member and Fellow of AIST; his awards include the T.L. Joseph Award for long-standing contributions to ironmaking technology. He is also a special member of the International Iron Metallics Association.

Mike Grant Bio
After completing his bachelor’s and master’s of applied science degrees in metallurgical engineering at the University of British Columbia (Vancouver, Canada), Mike Grant started his career in 1988 working in ironmaking for Inland Steel Co. (East Chicago, Ind., USA) as a blast furnace process engineer. In 1997, he joined Air Liquide to develop and commission burner and oxygen injection systems for electric arc furnaces (EAFs). In 2001, when Air Liquide purchased American Combustion (ACI), he began working for ACI designing and commissioning oxygen injection systems for EAFs. Since joining Air Liquide, he has designed, successfully commissioned and optimized more than 30 EAFs worldwide. In 2007, he was transferred to Air Liquide Research Labs just outside Paris to work on EAF and blast furnace topics — most notably the European Commission ULCOS project (Ultra Low CO2 Steelmaking), where he was on the European team developing the Top Gas Recycling Blast Furnace. He remains in Europe to this day, based in Frankfurt, Germany. In his current position, he uses his technical and operational experience in the steel industry to develop Air Liquide’s tactical and long-term strategies geared toward the steel industry.  He is an invited speaker each year at the annual AIST Modern Electric Furnace Steelmaking Training Seminar.

Frederik Hippe Bio
Frederik Hippe studied metallurgical engineering at the RWTH Aachen University in Germany. He continued as a research associate at the RWTH Steel Institute before joining thyssenkrupp in 2019. As an expert for iron- and steelmaking processes and injection technology, he works on topics regarding the transformation toward a sustainable steel production and manages the practical implementation of various CO2 efficiency projects.


David Marshall, Performance Improvement Inc., and Mitren Sukhram, Hatch Associates Ltd.

David Marshall
David Marshall studied electrical engineering at Teesside University and received his M.B.A. at Ivey Western and a CMRP designation in 2005. In 1982, he emigrated from England to Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., Canada, with Bailey Hoogovens. He worked there in electrical and automation and transferred to Burlington, Ont., in 1987 to set up a similar group. He spent time working in Nova Scotia, northern states of the U.S., Holland, South Africa, Slovakia and Australia, involved in mainly blast furnace relines and technology transfer from Hoogovens. In 1993, Marshall led a team to Australia to work on the HiSmelt development project, building the hot blast stoves. He then returned to manage various offices and eventually the 300-person North American Danieli Corus (Hoogovens) organization until leaving in 2001. Since then, he has been part of a global reliability and environmental improvement process equipment group, specializing in blast furnaces, gas recovery and power generation. He splits his time between that and new process and power technology development. He is a Life Member of AIST, having served specific roles on the Ironmaking, Project & Construction Management and Maintenance & Reliability Technology Committees.

Mitren Sukhram
Mitren Sukhram is a process specialist in the Pyrometallurgy Sector Practice at Hatch, focused on all aspects of blast furnace ironmaking. He is deeply involved in process performance analysis, Industry 4.0 for blast furnaces, reline planning, techno-economic assessments, campaign life assessment/extension and operational support for blast furnaces located around the world. More recently, he has developed innovative concepts to improve blast furnace productivity and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Sukhram is a graduate of the University of Toronto, where he completed bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. degrees in materials science and engineering. His areas of expertise include thermodynamics, heat, mass, momentum transfer, process modeling, big data, and analytics in pyrometallurgical processes. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ontario, Canada. Sukhram recently co-authored a new book entitled Blast Furnace Ironmaking, Analysis, Control and Optimization with Hatch co-authors Ian Cameron and Kyle Lefebvre and professor emeritus William (Bill) Davenport of the University of Arizona.

Organized by: AIST’s Ironmaking, Direct Reduced Iron and Energy & Utilities Technology Committees