AM invests $10 million from carbon neutrality fund in Heliogen solar firm

ArcelorMittal has made the first $10 million investment from its first XCarb carbon neutrality fund investment in solar company Heliogen, the steelmaker said June 8.

On top of the initial investment, AM and Heliogen have also signed a memorandum of understanding to evaluate the potential of Heliogen’s products for several of AM’s steel plants, it said in a statement.

“Developing and deploying breakthrough technologies is at the heart of our climate action strategy,” Pinakin Chaubal, AM’s chief technology officer, said in the statement. “While our own efforts are progressing well, the objective of our XCarb Innovation fund is to extend our reach and support companies developing technologies which could assist us on our decarbonization journey. The technology Heliogen is developing has the potential to do exactly that.”

ArcelorMittal set up the XCarb fund in March, with the aim of investing up to $100 million annually in companies developing technologies to speed the steel industry’s transition towards carbon-neutral production. The technology also needs to be commercially scalable, AM said.

Heliogen’s solar technology is to be converted into heat (HelioHeat), electricity (HelioPower) or clean fuels (HelioFuel), AM said. All three Heliogen products have the potential to be used in the steelmaking process and sustain the industry’s transition to carbon neutrality, it said.

Hydrogen is an important element towards carbon neutrality as it can be used instead of natural gas as the reductant in the production of direct-reduced iron.

— Annalisa Villa