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Hydrogen economy

POSCO to lead global forum on next-generation steelmaking technology

Hydrogen-based steelmaking processes projected to replace the centuries-old blast furnace method

By Sep 29, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

POSCO's head of steel business division Kim Hak-dong.
POSCO's head of steel business division Kim Hak-dong.

POSCO will host an international forum next month with the world’s major steel and mining companies to develop greener steelmaking processes based on hydrogen technologies.

POSCO said on Sept. 29 that it will host the Hydrogen Iron & Steel Making Forum 2021 on Oct. 6-8 with 10 steelmakers including ArcelorMittal, Nippon Steel, Hesteel Group as well as the three major mining firms BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Vale. The forum will be held both online and offline in South Korea.

“We prepared this event with our conviction to lead the era of greener steel, in step with the growing importance of the ESG agenda, and in line with the long-term carbon neutrality goals,” said POSCO’s head of steel division Kim Hak-dong.

POSCO said it initially proposed the event to the industry players in May 2020 at the 52nd Technology Committee meeting (TECO-52) hosted by the World Steel Association. POSCO added that developing hydrogen-based steelmaking processes is an industry-wide agenda that requires a tight partnership of all market players.

The steelmaker had also partnered with Australia’s major iron ore supplier Roy Hill in August to work together to significantly reduce carbon emissions in the mining and steel sectors.

The forum will have chief technology officers (CTOs) of the world’s leading steel companies to discuss the latest developments in hydrogen-based steelmaking technologies, global environmental policies on carbon neutrality as well as potential business partnerships.

The hydrogen-based steelmaking process uses hydrogen, instead of coal, as a reducing agent to separate oxygen from iron ore to produce zero carbon emissions. The new method is expected to replace the blast furnace method developed centuries ago during the Industrial Revolution.

POSCO at the forum will be sharing HyREX, a type of hydrogen-based steelmaking technology developed in-house, with other participating firms.  

“We hope that the forum will accelerate the partnership among the market players in shifting the whole industry towards carbon neutrality,” added Kim.

Write to Kyung-min Kang at kkm1026@hankyung.com

Daniel Cho edited this article.

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