Steel News

SSAB to Begin Process Route Shift 

11/14/2019 - SSAB plans to replace two of its Swedish blast furnaces with an electric arc furnace and intends to be the first to bring a fossil-fuel-free steel to the market, company officials announced during the annual Swedish Steel Prize event this week in Stockholm.

“We intend to gradually convert the entire production chain right up to finished steel across SSAB’s production system in Sweden, Finland and the U.S. The goal is for the entire company to be fossil-free by 2045 at the latest,” said Martin Pei, SSAB’s chief technology officer and board chairman of HYBRIT Development, an SSAB joint venture set up to develop hydrogen steelmaking. 

SSAB said the two blast furnaces to be replaced are at its Oxelösund plant. The change-over is expected to occur in 2025 and will eliminate most of the CO2 emissions at the site, SSAB said. 

Meanwhile , the company anticipates that its U.S. operations, which utilize scrap-based electric arc furnace (EAF) steelmaking, will be powered completely by renewable energy by 2022 at its Iowa operations. It will also be able to offer fossil-free steel products starting in 2026, utilizing sponge iron developed through the HYBRIT initiative in Sweden. The HYBRIT initiative was launched in 2016 to replace coal and coke with fossil-free hydrogen gas.

“It will take time for a completely new market for fossil-free products to emerge and so we need to start now. Together with our customers, we will work to find successful business models to launch fossil-free products on the market in 2026,” said Martin Lindqvist, SSAB’s chief executive.

“Fossil-free steel will also help other sectors such as automotive, heavy transport and construction to become fossil free. Together, we will be able to offer end users a completely fossil-free value chain, from the mine to the end product.”