Skip to content

World Cement News

Cambridge engineers invent world’s first zero emissions cement

Three Cambridge engineers, Dr Cyrille Dunant, Dr Pippa Horton and Professor Julian Allwood, have filed a patent and been awarded new research funding for their invention of the world’s first emissions-free route to recycle Portland cement.
Combining steel and cement recycling in a single process powered by renewable electricity could secure the supply of the basic materials of construction to support the infrastructure of a zero emissions world and to enable economic development where it is most needed.
Professor Allwood
Replacing today’s cement is one of the hardest challenges on the journey to a safe climate with zero emissions. There are many options to make cement with reduced emissions, mainly based on mixing new reactive cement (clinker) with other supplementary materials. However, until now, it has not been possible to make the reactive component of cement without emissions. The new invention achieves this for the first time within the parameters of established industrial processes.

The inspiration for Cambridge Electric Cement struck inventor Cyrille Dunant, when he noticed that the chemistry of used cement is virtually identical to that of the lime-flux used in conventional steel recycling processes. The new cement is therefore made in a virtuous recycling loop, that not only eliminates the emissions of cement production, but also saves raw materials, and even reduces the emissions required in making lime-flux.

The new process begins with concrete waste from demolition of old buildings. This is crushed, to separate the stones and sand that form concrete from the mixture of cement powder and water that bind them together. The old cement powder is then used instead of lime-flux in steel recycling. As the steel melts, the flux forms a slag that floats on the liquid steel, to protect it from oxygen in the air. After the recycled steel is tapped off, the liquid slag is cooled rapidly in air, and ground up into a powder which is virtually identical to the clinker which is the basis of new Portland cement. In pilot-scale trials of the new process, the Cambridge team have demonstrated this combined recycling process, and the results show that it has the chemical composition of a clinker made with today’s process.

The new cement was invented as part of the large multi-university UK FIRES programme led by Professor Allwood, which aims to enable a rapid transition to zero emissions based on using today’s technologies differently, rather than waiting for the new energy technologies of hydrogen and carbon storage. Invention of the cement has been rewarded with a new research grant of £1.7m from EPSRC, to allow the inventors to collaborate with Dr Zushu Li at Warwick University and Dr Rupert Myers at Imperial College, to reveal the underlying science behind the new process. The new grant will fund an additional team of researchers, to probe the range of concrete wastes that can be processed into Cambridge Electric Cement, evaluate how the process interacts with steel making, and confirm the performance of the resulting material.

Professor Allwood said ‘If Cambridge Electric Cement lives up to the promise it has shown in early laboratory trials, it could be a turning point in the journey to a safe future climate. Combining steel and cement recycling in a single process powered by renewable electricity, this could secure the supply of the basic materials of construction to support the infrastructure of a zero emissions world and to enable economic development where it is most needed.’

HeidelbergCement announces plans for world’s first carbon neutral plant

German materials producer HeidelbergCement has announced plans to build the world’s first carbon neutral plant in Sweden.

The company’s Slite factory, on the Swedish island of Gotland, presently produces around 75% of the cement used in Swedish concrete, and emits around 1.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. If all goes according to plan, all of this carbon will be captured and sequestered underground.

• The plan is explained here:

Dominik von Achten, chairman of Heidelberg, said the aim was to make the company “the leader in the global cement industry on its transformation path towards climate neutrality”.

He said the goal was to “find, apply and scale technical solutions for carbon capture and utilisation or storage”.

The company estimates that the authorisation processes and the construction period will take around 10 years. It has already launched feasibility study to examine technology, environmental impact, legal issues, financing, logistics, and energy supply.

Heidelberg is currently building the world’s first full-scale installation for carbon capture at its Brevik plant in Norway, capturing 400,000 tonnes annually, or half of its emissions from 2024 onwards.

Giv Brantenberg, general manager of HeidelbergCement Northern Europe, commented that the company’s positive experiences at Brevik had persuaded it to “significantly ramp up” its ambitions for carbon capture.

Additionally, the use of biofuels in will be increased in line with the Heidelberg’s commitment to raising the share of biomass in its fuel mix.

RCFD responds to cement plant fire

RAPID CITY, S.D. — a structure fire broke out shortly before 3 p.m. on Wednesday at the Rapid City Cement Plant.

A fire on a conveyor belt spread into a nearby building, however, workers from the plant were able to put out part of the blaze with fire extinguishers before Rapid City firefighters arrived on scene. RCFD was then able to successfully put out the rest of the flames.

No one was injured during the incident.

 Source  :

Taiwan Cement building PV power station

Taiwan Cement has started constructing a PV power station on fish culture ponds in central Taiwan.

TCC Green Energy, Taiwan Cement’s wholly-owned subsidiary which develops renewable energy, is responsible for the project, and Taiyen Green Energy is the EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) contractor.

With total investment of over NT$2 billion (US$69 million) and installation capacity of 43.6MWp, the PV power station will begin generating electricity in July 2021, with annual output of 54 million kWh, equivalent to power demand by 16,000 households, the company said.

Taiwan Cement will continue building PV power stations on fish ponds, setting a mid-term target of 200MWp in cumulative installation capacity.

TCC Green Energy has completed renewable energy generation facilities of 35MW in total, and is constructing another 49MW.

Source: digitimes

Ghana: Government Gets Gh₵250,000 Support From Diamond Cement Group to Fight COVID-19

The COVID-19 National Trust Fund set up by the President to support government’s effort in curbing the spread of the coronavirus pandemic has received a GH₵250,000 support from Diamond Cement Group.

The cement manufacturing company presented a cheque for GH₵100,000 to the fund and in addition a total of 250 tonnes of cement worth GH₵150,000 towards the rehabilitation of isolation centres across the country.

A top delegation from the Diamond Cement Group including the Chairman, Mr Mukesh Patel, Mr Himesh Patel, a Director and Mr B.V.K Raju, the General Manager were present at the Ministry of Information in Accra on Tuesday to present the cheque.

The delegation was accompanied by the Executive Secretary of the Cement Manufacturers Association of Ghana (CMAG), Reverend Dr George Dawson-Amoah, who was on hand to endorse the donation as Diamond Cement Group is a member of CMAG.

This donation brings to GH₵1.25 million as donations from cement manufacturers in Ghana.

Presenting the amount to the Minister of Information Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the Chairman of the Diamond Cement Group, Mr Mukesh Patel said the group saw the need to donate to the fund considering how crucial we all need to work together to help minimise the negative impact of the pandemic on economic activities.

Mr Patel commended the government for taking giant steps towards preventing the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic and urged the entire citizens to follow the protocols outlined by the government to avoid a possible spread.

He hoped the cement donated would be used for its intended purpose to cater for cases recorded and isolation centres for effective management.

The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah thanked the Diamond Cement Group and members of the Cement Manufacturers Association for their commitment in supporting the government to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

He observed this as a patriotic gesture and assured of government’s commitment to fight the pandemic with every resource available.

Read the original article on Ghanaian Times.

COVID-19 stalls tyre-burning project

The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has put the brakes on an ambitious project for Caribbean Cement Company to remove and incinerate between 1.5 and two million tyres from the Riverton City landfill.

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Government and Caribbean Cement was signed last July to see the removal of the environmentally hazardous tyres from the landfill.

During the pilot stage last December 6,000 tyres were burnt by the cement company in 11 days, but with the onset of COVID-19, the project has been put on hold.

“We signed a MOU with the Government of Jamaica last year and we did the testing. We learnt a lot from that and we realised that we were able to start burning them on a continuous basis,” Yago Castro, general manager of Caribbean Cement Company, told the Jamaica Observer.

“We think that we can eliminate all the tyres that are at Riverton in a respectable amount of time, less than 10 years. They are now stored there, dumped there, and that constitutes different types of hazards. As you know mosquitoes [can breed in them]” said Castro. They are also a fire hazard, he added.

He noted that the incineration of used tyres is something that is done in many parts of the world in an environmentally friendly manner and argued that the same can be done in Jamaica.

“The cement kiln is perfect for that because of the technology, the high temperatures; the items inside the kiln guarantee that you fully destroy the tyres and you do not generate any acids at all, so that everything is incorporated into the final products.

“Perfect solution. Technical solution. We can do it. We have the technology here in Jamaica, we have retaken the conversations with the Government but I think with the COVID thing of course the Government has a lot of other priorities right now.

“But I hope that we will be able to take it forward. It is an idea to really be implemented in a medium- to long-term scheme,” said Castro.

He argued that the cement company does not stand to earn any economic benefits from the programme but it is committed to the project because it is great for the country.

In announcing the MOU with Caribbean Cement last year, Prime Minister Andrew Holness noted that the tyres have been accumulating for decades at Riverton as well as other landfill sites across the island.

Holness pointed out that the tyres pose a serious threat to the environment, mainly due to the fire hazard, as, when they are burnt, toxins are released into the atmosphere. He argued that the project was imperative for the Government’s environmental agenda.
“The Government is on a path; we are committed, and I think that this is a synergetic solution to the problem of solid waste disposal, particularly those combustible types in the form of tyres,” said Holness then.

“Carib Cement will be responsible for the payment of costs relating to the offloading of the tyres, and the Ministry of Local Government and the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation will share equally in the cost of putting the tyres on the trucks and transporting them to the kiln,” noted Holness.

The prime minister was supported by minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Daryl Vaz, who argued that the project was an important public-private partnership that would deal with a very sensitive environmental issue.

Vaz said the Government was working to find a solution to the issue of the stockpiled tyres for some two years, as an average of 1,000 tyres are deposited at the Riverton landfill each day.

He further pointed out that a major issue which has impeded the proper management of tyres at the dumps was that they were illicitly burnt, from time to time, so that the copper extract could be taken out and used in the scrap metal industry.