The process gas formed in the production of SiC is recovered, desulphurised, then incinerated in a steam boiler. The high-pressure steam produced is currently used to generate electricity via a steam turbine and generator. The electricity generated is consumed by the SiC production facility. This results in savings in electricity consumption of around 20%, equivalent to the consumption of 24,000 households. Electricity can also be injected into the electricity grid, contributing to the stability of the national electricity supply.
Although the savings in electricity are considerable, they could be 4 times greater if ESD-SIC was able to sell the steam it generates to chain partners. Using the steam in this way would save 30 million cubic metres of natural gas and 50,000 tons of CO2 emissions which would otherwise result from producing this steam with natural gas.
In partnership with investors, work is currently underway on developing a local steam network that can supply current and possibly future companies with steam for their processes. ESD-SIC could provide a significant portion of that steam. The steam network is intended to be operational within 2023.