Industrial processes are responsible for high levels of CO2 emissions, amounting to 8.5% of all European emissions. Around 50% of these emissions come from the manufacturing processes of mineral products, such as glass, lime, and cement, owing to their large energy consumption. In fact, they emit more CO2 combined than the chemical and metal production industries. Glassmaking is energy intensive, primarily due to the large amount of energy required to melt and refine glass. The bulk of the energy consumed comes from fossil fuel combustion to heat furnaces that melt the raw materials to form glass. The melting furnace operates continuously at temperatures up to 1 600 to 1 700C, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This step accounts around 85% for the total energy use at the plant.
The LIFE Smart Oxy-Boost project aims to demonstrate partial oxy-fuel conversion of a side-fired regenerative (air-fuel) float glass furnace. The investment in the new technology is expected to be recouped in two to three years.
Specifically, it aims to:
The project will contribute to the implementation of the Industrial Emissions Directive and the Paris Agreement, as well as the possible implementation of a new industrial policy strategy.