Decarbonisation options for reheat furnaces

January 4th, 2024

R&D Focus Areas:
Techno-economic evaluation, Industrial heat processes

Lead Organisation:
Swinburne University of Technology

Infrabuild Steel


Start date:
March 2023

Completion date:
March 2026

Key contacts:
Gordon Chakaodza – Director, Victorian Hydrogen Hub:
Victorian Hydrogen Hub (VH2):
Geoffrey Brooks, Project Primary Supervisor:
Tharindu Siyambalapitiya, Project Key Researcher:

Victorian Government – Victorian Hydrogen Hub

Project total cost:

Project summary description:
Steelmaking is an energy intensive process and effective utilization of energy is important to the overall economic and environmental viability of the process. Reheat furnaces are a crucial part of the steelmaking process, accounting for around 60% of the energy use in secondary steelmaking. The reheat furnace utilizes energy to ensure that the billets that come from casting are sent to rolling after heating to temperatures up to 1,300ᵒC.

The study progressed to conduct modelling on a novel approach of inductive heating proposed in the literature and its feasibility to be applied into billet heating is investigated. In the current use of induction heating in steel reheat furnaces, there are key shortcomings which had led to question its potential beyond its current level of use. Furthermore, research and laboratory experiments will be conducted to investigate the formation of scale under different environments in the reheat furnace under the use of hydrogen, natural gas, biofuels, induction heating and combinations of these as fuel sources. Additionally, the metallurgical structure will be observed for changes (if any).

The research would be analysing the feasibility in terms of economic aspects by conducting a techno-economic analysis. This would provide a comprehensive overview of the technological and economic viability of alternative fuels in the reheat furnace.

Related publications and key links:
None at this stage.

Higher degree studies supported:
One PhD student at Swinburne University of Technology is supported by this project.


Reviewed: April 2024