A major Chinese steel manufacturing company has introduced a technology developed in Iran to boost its output and improve its environmental credentials.
A Monday report by Iran’s state-run metals conglomerate IMIDRO said the Persian Reduction (PERED) technology had been rolled out by a company in Chin’s northern Taiyuan region on June 21, a first time the method is used in China where the world's largest share of steel is produced.
The report said engineers and contractors from Iran’s Mines & Metals Engineering company had contributed to the construction of the new sponge iron plant in Taiyuan.
Sponge iron, or what is technically known as direct reduced iron (DRI), is a pre-reduced ferrous material used to make steel.
Iran is the world’s second largest producer of sponge iron as the DRI accounts for a bulk of the feedstock used in the Iranian steel mills.
The IMIDRO report said that using DRI method is a rarity in China where blast furnaces are widely used to supply iron to the steelmakers.
The furnace designed by Iran’s MME in Taiyuan has been running on coke oven gas since it started operation, said the report.
It said that it has become China’s policy in the steel industry in recent years to increase the number of gas-fired smelters to comply with the latest international standards on protection of the environment.
The PERED technology relies on unique catalysts that accelerate the chemical reactions involving gas in the reduction furnace. The catalysts also guarantee a long life-cycle for the furnaces compared to other methods.
The rollout of the PERED technology in Taiyuan is based on a 2013 contract between China’s Shanxi Taihang Mining Co. Ltd (CSTM) and Iran's MME which has its headquarters based in Germany.