First step towards electric cracker

A major step towards reducing CO2 emissions is the electric heating of cracker ovens. A consortium of Shell, Dow, TNO and ISPT recently commissioned an experimental electric cracker. This should provide data for the next step in 2025: a pilot plant of several megawatts.

“Today we have taken a big step towards decarbonisation of one of the key processes of our industry,” said Thomas Casparie, senior vice president of Shell Chemicals and Products on 16 June at the opening of the e-cracking furnace experimental unit at the Energy Transition Campus Amsterdam. This unit is an initiative of a consortium of Shell, Dow, TNO and ISPT and is a step towards electrification of one of the most carbon-intensive installations within the petrochemical industry: the (steam) cracker.

Shell and Dow signed a development agreement in 2020 to define the most promising electrification routes. “This first experimental unit is the result of hard work by experts at Dow and Shell,” said Stephen Fowler, vice president of Chemistry, Downstream Processing and BioTechnology at Shell. “Specialists in steam crackers, electrical engineering, process intensification, modelling and metallurgy worked together interactively and intensively. To this was added the craftsmanship of specialists in building experimental facilities. This led to the design and construction of the unit on the Energy Transition Campus Amsterdam.” The set-up was realised with a subsidy of three and a half million euros from the MOOI programme of the central government.

Read the full article (in Dutch) in VNCI Chemie Magazine.


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