Steel News

Midrex Technology Selected for H2-Based Iron Reduction Plant

9/17/2019 - The world’s largest steelmaker has chosen Midrex Technologies to build a demonstration-scale, ironmaking plant that uses hydrogen reduction.

In a joint announcement, ArcelorMittal and Midrex said the direct reduced iron plant will be built at ArcelorMittal’s Hamburg facility in Germany and will produce about 100,000 metric tons annually, once operational.

"We are working with a world-class provider, Midrex Technologies, to learn how you can produce virgin iron for steelmaking at a large scale by only using hydrogen. This project, combined with our on-going projects on the use of non-fossil carbon and on carbon capture and use, is key to become carbon neutral in Europe in 2050,” said ArcelorMittal vice president Carl de Maré, who is responsible for the company’s technology strategy. 

“Large-scale demonstrations are critical to show our ambition,” de Maré  said. “However, it will depend on the political conditions, how fast transformation will take place.” 

The plant will first rely on “grey” hydrogen, hydrogen generated by natural-gas-fueled processes.

“Conversion to green hydrogen from renewable energy sources will take place once available in sufficient quantities and at an economical cost,” the company said, adding that wind farms off the coast of northern Germany could be one potential source.

ArcelorMittal Hamburg is an EAF-based producer of billet and wire rod. It already has a Midrex direct reduction plant that can produce about 600,000 metric tons annually.

"Our site is the most energy-efficient production plant at ArcelorMittal. With the new, hydrogen-based DRI plant we are now planning, we will raise steel production to a completely new level, as part of our Europe-wide ambition to be carbon neutral by 2050,” said ArcelorMittal Hamburg chief executive Dr. Uwe Braun.