Two Swedish-based companies, one automaker, and another steelmaker are aligning to bring a fossil-free steel truck by 2022.
Image credits- Industry Europe and Volvo Trucks
The steel made by SSAB is hydrogen produced from renewable energy. Volvo plans to use steel in their production, starting with small-scale production by 2022.
The generic steel is made from withering iron ores or with a blast furnace consisting of coke, limestone, or iron ore. Producing more electrical vehicles would be damage to the environment either way because the iron ores are taken from the ground, and the methods used to make steel have high carbon emissions.
SSAB fossil-free moto
SSAB steel in Finland and Sweden is produced is in a similar way, but the company acknowledged the fact that carbon emissions are unavoidable. Their steel manufacturing in the US is based on scrap material, which causes low carbon emissions comparatively.
Furthermore, the company estimates that by 2050 half of the steel demand will be met by scrap materials, which is similar to recycling the existing steel scrap.
For their deal with Volvo, they are assuring fossil-free steel with hydrogen produced from sustainable methods. SSAB is the first kind of steel manufacturer to go to the lengths in making innovative products. Because they have HYBRIT technology, which is the result of their partnership with other steel manufacturers. The companies involved with this technology are LKAB, Vattenfall, and SSAB.
Does Volvo need fossil-free steel?
The question seems absurd, while every car company is working towards making sustainable products. However, the question about Volvo being ready to have a fossil-free electric truck is genuine.
Currently, the trucks sold by the company are either electric or gas-fueled. These are traditional trucks, made with any other quality steel.
With Volvo’s partnership with SSAB, a company that in turn has a partnership with LKAB and Vattenfall, the complex alignment can mess up with the downfall of one. This means Volvo is more or less partnering with LKAB and Vattenfall too.
However, in the end, steel manufacturing in SSAB will be used by Volvo trucks. Martin Lundstedt, the CEO of Volvo said, “This is an important step on the road to completely climate-neutral transport,”
The HYBRIT technology production started last year around the month of August. Furthermore, the production is only testing to attempt manufacturing of steel replacing with cooking coal, instead of iron ore. Then use renewable energy electricity or hydrogen.
However, we are yet to wait for the new fossil-free steel to be manufactured for commercial purposes.