Pushing the limits of refractory recycling by advanced laser characterisation

The ReSoURCE Project
Establishing a circular economy for refractory industry by extending recycling and the use of secondary raw materials is indispensable. RHI Magnesita is committed to reach ambitious sustainability goals, preserving natural resources, and reducing CO2 emissions. Circular economy will be one of the main drivers to significantly reduce CO2 in the refractory industry, as the energy-intensive primary raw material production has by far the highest impact on the product's carbon footprint.

So far, reliable automated sorting solutions could not be established in refractory recycling as standard processing step, because the development is extremely complex and requires combination of different sensor technologies. The ReSoURCE project, funded by the European Union, will innovate the full process chain of refractory recycling with an AI-supported multi-sensor sorting equipment as its core technology. Combining laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, hyper spectral imaging with optimized pre-processing, and automated ejection will lay the foundation to set a new state-of-the-art for refractory sorting starting for the first time also taking care of manually unsortable particle sizes. The continuous monitoring of the economic and ecologic benefits by techno-economic and life cycle assessment will ensure the green and digital transformation of the refractory recycling value chain. Reaching the ReSoURCE objectives will lead to massive annual CO2 reductions (up to 800 kilo tonnes) and energy savings (up to 760 GWh) in the European Union. Naturally, usage of secondary raw materials is related to a reduction of extractive processing in the raw material mines (reduction of 1 million ton per year). Simultaneously, it will give access to currently unexploited raw material sources within the European Union, therewith strengthening EU’s resilience by fostering refractory material autarky, particularly as some of the refractory base materials are listed on the EU's critical raw material list (bauxite, graphite) (Vollprecht et al. 2021). The two demonstrators to be built in course of the ReSoURCE project, will ensure the straight-forward exploitation and implementation of this revolutionising recycling process chain in the European industry.



Copyright: © Lehrstuhl für Abfallverwertungstechnik und Abfallwirtschaft der Montanuniversität Leoben
Quelle: Recy & Depotech 2022 (November 2022)
Seiten: 2
Preis inkl. MwSt.: € 1,00
Autor: Dr. Alexander Leitner
S. Königshofer
St. Heid
V. Mörkens
Dr. Joachim Makowe

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