Outotec has won the Cleantech Finland® award for developing new ferrochrome production technology that promotes sustainable development.
The European Union organizes the European Business Awards for the Environment competition every other year for companies pioneering in environmentally friendly policies, products and processes and whose business activities promote the principles of sustainable development. The Finnish national competition, Cleantech Finland®, is coordinated by the Finnish National Fund for Research and Development - Sitra. By winning the Cleantech Finland® competition in process category Outotec has been qualified for the European Business Awards for the Environment 2008 competition.
"Ferrochrome is an essential alloy in the production of stainless steel. Outotec's ferrochrome production method innovatively utilizes the gas generated in the process as a gaseous fuel in the plant area. The process itself is a closed system, which considerably reduces the energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions to the environment. The technology is very topical now when the energy price and metals prices are high and environmental requirements are becoming tighter", gave the Finnish jury as reasons for the selection.
The ferrochrome process, developed originally at Outokumpu Oyj's Tornio Works and Outotec Oyj's research center in Pori, Finland, is continuously being developed. When the technology is sold to a new customer, the process will be tailored to meet the specific needs of each customer.
"The Cleantech Finland® award is a pleasant distinction to Outotec's ferrochrome technology which is competitive because of its cleanness and energy-efficiency. It has been estimated that, thanks to our technology, the cumulative carbon dioxide emissions of Outokumpu Tornio Works have been reduced by six million tonnes and of the ferrochrome plants in South Africa by five million tonnes respectively. Furthermore, the process significantly reduces the consumption of electric energy when compared to conventional processes. Our technology has been a success in the global market, and today it is used to produce approximately 35 per cent of the world's ferrochrome", explains Tapani Järvinen, President and CEO of Outotec.