Home » Cemex and Orcan Energy expand waste heat recovery plans

Cemex and Orcan Energy expand waste heat recovery plans

by Mark Cantrell
Cemex and Orcan Energy have announced a large-scale partnership to decarbonise cement production through the recovery of waste heat.

Cemex and Orcan Energy have announced a large-scale partnership to decarbonise cement production through the recovery of waste heat.

Building on their initial waste heat recovery collaboration at the cement plant in Rüdersdorf, Germany, the partners say they will now start to exploit Orcan Energy’s flexible and modular technology for Cemex globally.

The goal of this multi-site portfolio approach is to convert large waste heat volumes into clean energy, profitably reducing carbon emissions for Cemex overall.

Sergio Menéndez, president of Cemex Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia, said: “We already have an initial collaboration with Orcan. Based on the modularity of their solution, Orcan offers the flexibility of both installation and contracts.

“Thanks to this crucial flexibility, we can adapt to any upcoming changes in our plants. The approach enables us to reduce carbon emissions right now without limiting ourselves in implementing any future technologies such as carbon capture, utilisation, and storage. This partnership will help us achieve our sustainability targets and contribute to our aim to use all available heat.”

Andreas Sichert, chief executve of Orcan Energy, added: “We are looking forward to entering this large-scale decarbonisation partnership with Cemex after our initial cooperation in Germany.

“This step is a testament to Cemex’s forward-looking strategy and the company’s commitment to achieving net zero. For Orcan Energy, this is another milestone in scaling the business internationally with global enterprises.

“We are proud to be the partner of choice for the cement industry. Our large footprint across the industry shows the economic capability and the technical excellence of our modular and flexible solution, especially in view of uncertain future economic and regulative developments.”

In 2021, Cemex and Orcan Energy started their first joint project in Rüdersdorf, Germany, near Berlin, with the installation of six waste heat recovery modules which could produce up to 8,000 megawatt hours per year, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 3,000 tons.

Following this ongoing cooperation, the companies decided to enter a large-scale decarbonisation partnership, exploring the deployment of waste heat recovery solutions in several further sites, multiplying today’s electricity savings and CO2 reductions.

In industrial production, usually 30-60% of the energy is lost in the form of heat, Cemex explains. Cement production is particularly energy and CO2-intensive. Therefore, the cement industry is actively searching for ways to reduce carbon emissions and utilise its waste heat.

Modular waste heat recovery technology is said to be a proven and commercially viable energy efficiency solution that can be flexibly installed in several applications.

The heat-to-power modules can be placed at the pre-heater as well as the clinker cooler. Both heat sources can either be utilised combined or separately. If the waste heat availability changes over time, the modules can be redeployed at other waste heat sources and sites, or even be returned. Thanks to this flexibility, various other heat users can be included in the future – the heat extraction will retain its value in any event.

Main image: Cemex’ Rüdersdorf plant in Germany

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