Stahlwerk Thüringen to connect Unterwellenborn steel mill to German hydrogen network

German steel producer Stahlwerk Thüringen plans to connect the Unterwellenborn steel plant to the country’s expanding hydrogen network, it said Aug. 15.

Under the terms of a memorandum of understanding signed with pipeline system operator Ferngas, Stahlwerk aims to connect its Unterwellenborn plant in Thuringia to the hydrogen network from 2027.

Stahlwerk has been decarbonizing its steel mill operations, with the plant already utilizing 100% renewable energy for green steel production.

The decision to purchase green hydrogen via the grid infrastructure in the future is an important step toward largely decarbonized steel production, the company said.

“We want to take the next step toward the sustainable development of the steel industry and underline our leading role in the application of more environmentally friendly technologies,” said Alexander Stolze, head of purchasing, Stahlwerk. “The connection to the hydrogen network will maintain our competitiveness and strengthen the Thuringian steel mill as a center of low-emission steel production.”

The companies will need to acquire associated permits proving hydrogen operability at the plant and secure approval from the local legislature to operate the hydrogen lines.

Platts, part of S&P Global Commodity Insights, assessed Northwest European hot-rolled coil carbon-accounted steel at Eur735/mt ($803/mt) ex-works Ruhr on Aug. 14, down from a peak of Eur885/mt at the start of July. The Platts European carbon-accounted assessment is for HRC with a maximum 2.1 mt of carbon emissions through steel production and from the supply and processing of feedstocks, covering Scopes 1, 2 and 3.

Author Euan Sadden