Dusseldorf Thyssen-Krupp’s hydrogen subsidiary Nucera is supplying the Swedish steelmaker H2 Green Steel with electrolysis modules for the construction of a water electrolysis plant. Overall, the system with the 20-megawatt modules should have an output of 700 megawatts, as the Handelsblatt learned exclusively.
The green hydrogen will then be used to operate a new steelworks in the northern Swedish city of Boden. The power supply for the electrolysis plant is to be provided exclusively by renewable energies such as water and wind power.
“The Boden electrolyser plant will be many times larger than most existing electrolyser plants today,” says Maria Persson Gulda, Chief Technology Officer of H2 Green Steel. “We start with steel in Boden, Sweden, but that’s just the beginning.”
95 percent of CO2 emissions are to be saved
The operation of the electrolysis plant and the steelworks is scheduled to start at the end of 2025 and be ramped up in 2026. In the initial phase, the plant will produce 2.5 million tons of green steel, according to Nucera. By 2030, production is to be increased to around five million tons.
About 95 percent of CO2 emissions are to be saved through steel production with direct reduction plants. With direct reduction, coking coal is no longer needed for liquid pig iron, which is produced in CO2-intensive blast furnaces. Instead, the process uses gaseous reducing agents such as hydrogen to convert iron ore into sponge iron. This is then processed into high-quality crude steel in what is known as an electric arc furnace.
H2 Green Steel is the first company to reserve production capacity at Thyssen-Krupp Nucera. Because of the high demand, the Swedes secured the capacities at the beginning of the year, according to Nucera.
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“The market for solutions for the production of green hydrogen is growing very dynamically,” says Christoph Noeres, hydrogen expert and “Head of Green Hydrogen” at Thyssen-Krupp Nucera. This development is reflected in the demand for water electrolyzers – the devices in which hydrogen is generated using electricity.
“It is important for companies to reduce delivery times through continuous capacity building and thus improve the planning and feasibility of projects,” says Noeres. By reserving production capacities, customers could secure a decisive competitive advantage.
Focus on North America
Thyssen-Krupp Nucera offers technologies for electrolysis systems and builds electrolysis modules – the company calls the electrolysers “scalum”. Nucera’s hydrogen projects to date include an electrolysis plant in Saudi Arabia, the delivery of a plant for the company Unigel in Brazil and a hydrogen plant for Shell in Rotterdam. Nucera also wants to focus on the North American location in future business development, says a spokeswoman.
It is said that North America is a favorable location precisely because the US anti-inflation program offers a number of advantages. “The legal situation there is even more advantageous for electrolyser manufacturers than in the rest of the world.”
An IPO for Thyssen-Krupp’s hydrogen division is said to be planned for the coming month. This was reported by the Bloomberg news agency. According to the report, Nucera is valued at four billion euros. So far, the IPO had been postponed again and again, the reason given by the group was the volatile market environment.
More: IPO of Thyssen hydrogen division could come as early as June