Salzgitter and Uniper sign pre-contract for supply and purchase of green hydrogen

Salzgitter AG and Uniper SE have signed a pre-contract for the supply and purchase of green hydrogen that covers, among other things, the technical and commercial framework conditions for the supply of hydrogen. The hydrogen is to be produced in the 200 MW electrolysis plant planned by Uniper in Wilhelmshaven

The plant is scheduled to be commissioned in 2028.

The green hydrogen will be required for the SALCOS® – Salzgitter Low CO₂ Steelmaking program and will be used in the direct reduction plant being constructed in Salzgitter to produce almost CO₂-neutral steel. In this way, both companies want to make a significant contribution to reducing the CO₂ footprint of the German steel industry.
Depending in particular on the availability of the German hydrogen core network and a specific pipeline route from Wilhelmshaven to Salzgitter, Uniper could supply up to 20,000 tons of certified green hydrogen to Salzgitter every year starting 2028 at the earliest. This will be produced using renewable energies in the electrolysis plant that Uniper plans to build on the site of the former hard coal-fired power plant in Wilhelmshaven. This is the first step towards an external hydrogen supply for SALCOS®, which will require up to 150,000 tons of hydrogen per year in its first stage. According to Uniper, a pipeline connection from Wilhelmshaven to Salzgitter is absolutely essential and must be established as quickly as possible.
Gunnar Groebler, CEO of Salzgitter AG, stated: “With SALCOS®, we are a pioneer in the decarbonization of raw materials industry. From the beginning, we have relied on a network of strong partners to implement the program. The production and availability of green hydrogen is a key success criteria for SALCOS®. This agreement with Uniper is therefore another important step on our path to green steel. The energy infrastructure and the associated power grids now urgently need to be expanded.”

Holger Kreetz, COO of Uniper, said: “At Uniper, we pursue the clear goal of supporting companies in the decarbonization of their production processes. Green hydrogen plays a crucial role in this – especially in energy-intensive industries such as the steel industry. We look forward to working with Salzgitter AG and helping to reduce Salzgitter AG’s emissions. Such partnerships demonstrate the added value of our Energy Transformation Hub Northwest, strengthen the region’s role as an energy hub for the future and make a valuable contribution to achieving Germany’s climate targets together.”

Wilhelmshaven is seen as the ideal location for Uniper’s Green Wilhelmshaven projects due to its easy access to renewable energies, particularly from the offshore wind farms in the North Sea, the early connection to the German hydrogen pipeline system, and the planned hydrogen storage facilities in northern Germany. The plan is to expand electrolysis to a capacity of 1 GW, which will enable hydrogen production of 100,000 tons per year. In addition, Uniper will build a terminal in Wilhelmshaven for the import of green ammonia by ship with an output volume of at least 300,000 tonnes of hydrogen, which can be converted into hydrogen and also fed into the German nuclear grid.

The Salzgitter Group is pursuing a carbon direct avoidance strategy and will significantly reduce its carbon footprint. To achieve this, the SALCOS® program is gradually converting traditional coal-based steel production via the blast furnace route to direct reduction technology (DRI production with downstream EAF), which will initially mainly use natural gas and increasingly green hydrogen as a reducing material. The first step has been prepared by concluding a pre-contract with Uniper.
HTW Editorial Team

HTW Editorial Team

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