- Joint research project „Green-NH3 – CO2-neutral boiler“ of the GWI and SAACKE GmbH investigates the industrial combustion of ammonia
- Experts consider it as a key technology in the energy mix of the futur
Bremen / Essen, 27. July 2023 – A new research project by the Gas- und Wärme-Institut Essen e.V. (GWI) and SAACKE GmbH is focusing on the potential of using ammonia in steam and hot water boilers as well as high-temperature boilers. Green ammonia has so far been a hidden champion in the public perception. However, in the energy mix of the future, the low-emission combustion of the NH3 molecule for CO2-neutral boiler applications could be a key technology to sustainably decarbonise energy-intensive industries such as steel, cement, chemicals and shipping.
Prototypes as the basis for a production-ready NH3 burner system from SAACKE.
"At SAACKE, we have been bundling competence and expertise in the development of low-emission combustion plants and system solutions for thermal processes with a wide variety of fuels for decades. We are using the results gathered from this project to develop a burner system for the use of ammonia as a fuel that is ready for series production in a timely manner," explains Christopher D. Rosebrock, Process Engineer at SAACKE GmbH. To this end, the GWI is conducting extensive basic research, from which a low-emission combustion system will be developed on a laboratory scale, manufactured and tested at the GWI. With the help of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations, the results obtained are validated and used for scaling up to the industrial scale. The implementation will then take place in the second part of the research project in cooperation with the GWI and the associated partners.
Share of energy source mix in shipping could be around a quarter by 2050
Irrespective of this, the use of ammonia in the maritime sector is also gaining in importance. Ammonia is a widespread feedstock for many products, such as fertilisers, which are already transported over long distances by sea freight. In the future, the potential could also be used as fuel for ship engines and for heating water: "We are convinced that ammonia will support, if not replace, the possibilities of CO2-free energy production in many areas in the future. In shipping, its share could rise to around a quarter in the next 25 years," explains Rosebrock - and sees further opportunities for the steel, cement and chemical industries. "The pioneering work of this research project can make a significant contribution to the European Green Deal to transform Europe into a climate-neutral continent by 2050," the developer is certain. Accordingly, the joint project is supported politically and financially by the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry for Economic Affairs, Innovation, Climate Protection and Energy and by associated partners from the above-mentioned industries, such as Currenta, Bayer, Iqony and Covestro.
SAACKE GmbH is one of the world market leaders in firing technologies in the industrial and maritime sectors. The medium-sized family business was founded in 1931 and employs a total of around 1,000 people, including a good 300 engineers and technicians. It has production sites in several countries and a worldwide service and sales network. The headquarters as well as research and development are located in Bremen.
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