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FLSmidth cuts up to 16% CO2 with Europe’s first full-scale clay calcination installation

By FLSmidth, July 05, 2021

At a new project in France, FLSmidth will deliver equipment to replace clinker with environmentally friendly clay, cutting up to 16% of CO2 emissions compared to existing cement products. The order includes the new FLSmidth flash calciner technology, environmental control system and alternative fuel storage. Final commissioning of the project is scheduled for the end of 2023.

In what is set to become Europe’s first full-scale clay calcination installation, FLSmidth will provide significant reductions in carbon emissions at Vicat’s French cement production. With a requested capacity of minimum 400 tpd. (up to 525 tpd. per design), the flash calciner will be installed at Vicat’s site in Xeuilley. The project also includes the facilities needed for alternative fuels firing and handling. This will minimise the need for traditional fuels, meaning the company can expect both a financial and environmental return-on-investment from lower CO2 emissions, fuel efficiency and a reduced clinker ratio.

“EU regulations and increasing demand for more sustainable cement has accelerated the decision to introduce clay as an environmental alternative to clinker in our production,” says Mr.Eric Bourdon, Deputy CEO at Vicat. “With clay readily available in the area and positive results from pilots at FLSmidth’s test facilities in Denmark, we feel confident about the technology and hope to be able to expand further in the future,” Mr. Eric Bourdon concludes.

The use of calcined clay to replace traditional, resource-intensive clinker is a key technology in eliminating the massive environmental footprint from traditional cement production, which today accounts for 7-8% of the world’s CO2 emissions and about 2% in France.

“The significance of this order cannot be underestimated; Vicat is setting a new standard for green cement in Europe,” says Carsten Riisberg Lund, Cement Industry President, FLSmidth. “Using clay as a component in the cement production is not new – it has been done for decades. But, with the new flash calciner system, we can produce a highly reactive clay that increases the clinker substitution by up to 40% in the final product, resulting in substantial CO2 reductions,” Carsten Riisberg Lund adds.

In addition to the clay calciner and alternative fuels handling facilities, the order includes dryer crusher, calcination tower and gas emissions abatement equipment.

The order value is above DKK200 million and has become effective in Q2 2021.

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