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REcovering Metals and Mineral FRAction from steelmaking residues

Project description

Improving circularity and sustainability in the EU steel industry

The EU steel industry is one of the major players in the European economy, supplying the automotive, machinery and other relevant sectors. One of the key issues that hinder the industry’s economic and environmental sustainability is the large amounts of metal and mineral residues generated each year; these residues are currently discarded, where they could be used to replace virgin materials. The EU-funded ReMFra project aims to overcome this issue. To that end, it will develop a process that will allow the valorisation of steelmaking residues, which will be tested and validated in an industrial-scale demonstration plant. The project will bring together a consortium of experts from industry and academia, whose work will contribute towards making the steel industry more circular and therefore more sustainable.


Each year the EU steel sector generates several million tons of metal and mineral containing residues that are currently largely under-exploited and are often sent to landfills with an enormous waste of resources that could replace virgin materials. ReMFra main objective is the development and validation of highly efficient pyrometallurgic melting and reduction demonstration plant at relevant industrial scale for recovering metals and minerals contained in a wide range of steelmaking residues.
The ReMFra process will allow to valorise steelmaking residues, such as filter dust, scale, sludge and slags, to obtain pig iron, iron rich oxides, a highly concentrated zinc oxide and an inert slag. ReMFra comprises two main parts to be developed, improved and tested at industrial scale: Plasma Reactor and RecoDust. The first will be dedicated to recover the coarse residues (scale, sludge, slag), while the second will focus on fine-grained dusts. The project will allow the improvement of iron yield using recovered pig iron instead of new pig iron and replacing the iron ore with the iron rich oxide. The recovery of concentrated ZnO and inert slag as by-products will provide a significant source of income and will contribute to the overall carbon neutrality. To reach the full circularity, the process foresees the use, as reducing agent, of secondary carbon sources (i.e. waste plastics). Energy recovery solutions will also be integrated in the metal recovery process starting from enabling the use of molten pig iron.
ReMFra consortium comprises: 5 steelmaking companies, 4 RTOs as technology providers with large experience in steel sector, 1 university and the European Steel Technology Platform. To conclude, ReMFra is expected not only to enable technological advances in the demonstrators involved but will also contribute to the development of new standards, training programmes, adaptation and certification of industrial processes thus facilitating the replication of the project.



Net EU contribution
€ 1 734 183,00
Piazza caduti 6 luglio 1944 n1
24044 Dalmine bergamo

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Nord-Ovest Lombardia Bergamo
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 1 156 122,00

Participants (10)