Innovations in Decarbonization
Aurubis, the multinational metal manufacturer, has completed a series of tests using ammonia as an alternative to natural gas for energy in its Hamburg facility. This marks a significant step in their decarbonization strategy, focusing on carbon-free energy sources in the push toward carbon-neutral production.
A Shift Towards Hydrogen
The company tested ammonia as a potential energy source for the production of copper wire rod, a crucial material for industries like energy and telecommunications. While a 20% ammonia admixture was the initial goal, it was not feasible due to environmental regulations and product quality standards. Consequently, Aurubis is shifting its focus toward using hydrogen, which has already shown promise in other production processes.
Collaboration and Future Planning
Aurubis is strengthening its relationship with ADNOC, a key provider of low-carbon ammonia, to create a hydrogen supply chain. Both parties have signed a letter of intent, signifying a mutual interest in expanding this collaboration. Furthermore, Aurubis is investigating the development of an ammonia cracker to enhance the hydrogen value chain, providing an energy-efficient way to store and transport energy.
Research and Community Impact
The next phase involves a research project to directly utilize hydrogen in copper wire rod production. Hamburg’s economic senator Melanie Leonhard supports Aurubis’ hydrogen endeavors, emphasizing the company’s role in aiding Hamburg’s goal of becoming a leading hydrogen metropolis in Europe.