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Elkem completes carbon-capture pilot project in Rana, Norway

| By Mary Bailey

Elkem ASA (Oslo, Norway) has completed its first pilot for carbon capture and storage (CCS) at its plant in Rana, Norway. The pilot recorded high capture rates of CO2, up to 95%, indicating technical viability of CCS in smelters.

Elkem’s Climate Director, Trond Sæterstad, said, “We’re excited to have completed our first pilot for CCS at our plant in Rana. Our high capture rates of up to 95%, combined with low amine degradation, show technical effectiveness of the technology. Now the challenge is to strengthen the business case for CCS, to make it commercially viable in an industry with global competition.”

Flue gas from silicon smelters has fluctuating and low CO2 concentrations. The success in capturing this CO2 in the pilot provides invaluable learning for future developments. The CCS pilot was operational for approximately 3000 hours between November 2022 – June 2023.

“The key learnings from this pilot helps us know how to optimise our plants for potential future implementation of carbon capture,” said Sæterstad.

Carbon Capture is included in Elkem’s climate strategy towards reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

“Elkem aims to be part of the solution to combat climate change. Our mission is to provide advanced material solutions, shaping a better and more sustainable future. We will use the results from this pilot to continue maturing technical and commercial aspects of potential future CCS implementation. Lowering implementation costs and attracting competitive framework conditions are also critical components of this process,” says Trond Sæterstad.

The project received financial support from Gassnova CLIMIT, and was a collaboration between Elkem and Mo Industripark, SINTEF, Alcoa, Celsa, Ferroglobe, SMA Mineral, Norcem, Norfrakalk, Arctic Cluster Team and Aker Carbon Capture.