Using Waste Gas to Reduce Energy Consumption
Not everyone has heard of technical terms like “degassing” or “outgassing,” but we have all seen the bright billow of flame burning above an oil refinery, or caught the scent of powerful fumes near a local factory. These are examples of industrial degassing, when companies release, burn off or otherwise eliminate waste gasses produced through their industrial processes. Metal manufacturers have always produced a significant amount of CO2 waste gas. Around the world, different companies do different things with this CO2 – some use it creatively to produce pellets, others use it as fuel for engines inside their facilities. But most of this waste gas is simply released into the atmosphere.
At Tenova, we are convinced there’s a better way.
General Manager - Technology, Tenova Pyromet
“We focused on using combusted CO2 to fuel preheaters that can reduce the energy demand of our clients’ smelting furnaces. We wanted to offer a more sustainable solution for existing furnaces that can have a positive impact on both energy consumption and the company’s bottom line.”
We concentrated on potential uses for waste gas and found a hidden opportunity: using CO2 off gas as fuel to reduce energy consumption. We designed and built a retrofittable preheater that can be applied to a range of existing smelting furnaces. The system is fueled by combusted CO2 off gas, and preheats raw ore to 500 degrees Celsius before it is fed into the furnace, reducing the amount of energy the furnace needs to consume to produce a ton of ferrochrome by ten percent. In a certain sense we’re achieving two sustainability goals at the same time. On one hand we’re recovering and reusing waste gas that would otherwise find its way into the atmosphere. On the other, we’re reducing the amount of electrical energy the furnace needs to consume in order to do its job. Less waste, less energy, lower expenses. Another example of Sustenovability: sustainable industrial processes done the Tenova way.