Mining and mineral group LKAB to switch to carbon-free sponge iron production

November 24, 2020

LKAB to switch from the production of iron ore pellets to carbon-free sponge iron (Courtesy LKAB)

The UK’s Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) reports that the Swedish-based mining and mineral group LKAB will switch from the production of iron ore pellets to carbon-free sponge iron using hydrogen-based technology. LKAB estimates that the move will cut annual carbon dioxide emissions by 35 mln t.

Under the Swedish government’s fossil-free Sweden initiative, twenty-two industrial sectors have developed roadmaps that show how they can become fossil-free or climate-neutral while boosting their competitiveness. Such work includes the HYBRIT development project, involving SSAB, LKAB and Vattenfall, which aims to enable the reduction of steel from iron ore using hydrogen instead of carbon.

This new work is said to represent the biggest Swedish industrial investment ever with annual investments of SEK 10 to 20 billion over twenty years. However, LKAB believes that by offering carbon-free products, it can more than double its annual sales up until 2045, and have the ability to supply the world market with the essential carbon-free iron when the global economy transitions.

The company’s entire production will reportedly shift from iron ore pellets to a hydrogen-based process similar to that currently under development with HYBRIT. LKAB is collaborating with companies such as SSAB, Vattenfall, Sandvik, ABB, Combitech, Epiroc and others to develop the technology that will enable the transition to fossil-free, autonomous mines.

Latest Industry News

Download the latest issue of PM Review

Our latest issue is now available to download in PDF format, free of charge.

As well as an extensive Powder Metallurgy industry news section, this 88-page issue includes the following exclusive articles and reports:

  • Arcast: A decade of innovation and a bright future for metal powder atomisation
  • Particle characterisation of metal powders with dynamic image analysis and laser diffraction
  • JPMA Awards 2020: A showcase of innovation in PM for new and existing applications
  • Understanding how the surface area of metal powders influences Additive Manufacturing
  • Euro PM2020: PM functional materials in energy management and magnetic applications
  • More information

Industry News


Sign up to our free e-newsletter, sent weekly to industry professionals around the world. We'll also let you know each time a new issue of PM Review magazine is available.

Subscribe for a FREE digital magazine

PM Review is the leading international magazine for the Powder Metallurgy industry.
Published four times a year, it is available as a free download or through a print subscription

Connect with us

Powder Metallurgy: The original net-shape production process

Powder Metallurgy components are relied upon by a wide variety of manufacturing industries, from automotive to power tools, household appliances, chemical engineering, filtration and more.

The main reason for the technology’s success is its cost-effectiveness at producing high volumes of net-shape components, combined with its ability to allow the manufacture of products that, because of the production processes, simply cannot be manufactured by other methods.

To discover more about how the technology has revolutionised component production, browse our Introduction to Powder Metallurgy.

Latest industry news

Copy link
Powered by Social Snap