The DESTINY project aims to realize a functional, green and energy saving, scalable and replicable solution, employing microwave energy for continuous material processing in energy intensive industries. The target is to develop and demonstrate a new concept of firing for granular feedstock to realize material transformation using full microwave heating as alternative energy source and complement to the existing conventional production. The DESTINY system is conceived as cellular kilns in a mobile modular plant, with significant advantages in terms of resource and energy efficiency, flexibility, replicability, scalability and a reduced environmental footprint.
The influence of the DESTINY solutions in terms of stability, process efficiency and characteristics of raw materials, intermediate/sub/final products will be investigated to improve performance of the industrial processes within 3 industrial sectors (Cement, Ceramics and Steel). New heating technologies, monitoring systems and numerical simulation tools will be used to drive the design and to excel in the outcome.
The industrialization and sustainability of DESTINY high temperature microwave technology will be assessed through the evaluation of relevant key performance indicators (KPI)s with life cycle methodologies. With the final aim of ensuring a large exploitation and market penetration for DESTINY, technology-based solution business models, economic viability and replicability analysis will be conducted. For guaranteeing industrial transferability, appropriate exploitation and dissemination activities have been defined during and even after the end of the project.
The DESTINY project aspires to introduce a “first-of-a-kind” high temperature microwave processing system at industrial level offering a variety of vital benefits to energy intensive sectors: reduced energy consumption, lower lifetime operating costs and enhanced sustainability profile.
The DESTINY system is conceived as cellular kilns in a mobile modular plant designed to cover the “material feedstock-firing-product storage” process in a unique clean system with increased production flexibility. Working with throughputs ranging from 10% to 100% capacity should be enabled without any major loss of the overall process performance.
Objectives focus towards the improvement of efficiency ratios in the following areas:
- Flexibility of ±30% to energy input within RES (Renewable Energy Sources) fluctuations time frames without significant losses in specific energy efficiency
- Improvement in energy efficiency of 40% (depending on different industry and product applications)
- Improvement in terms of resource (fuel) efficiency exceeding the value of 40%
- Decrease in CO2 emissions by 45% (without considering the electricity generation at steady state)
- Decreased OPEX and CAPEX by 15%.
Manufacturing is the driving force behind Europe’s economy providing over € 6,553 billion of GDP, which represents approximately 21% of the EU GDP and providing about 20% of all jobs (more than 30 million) in 25 different industrial sectors.
Within a context of climate change legislation, volatile energy prices and increased environmental awareness, modern manufacturing must focus on the introduction of modern and renewable energy solutions as well as on sustainability and eco-efficiency.
The EU mass commodity manufacturing industry has already implemented technologies, control systems and measures to reduce primary energy consumption and plant emissions. But, in order to achieve further significant energy reductions, it is necessary to target the most energy intensive parts of the production chain such as the firing processes. In this sense, the new system proposed in DESTINY will be a clear opportunity to improve the current industrial heating processes.
The DESTINY concept is indeed a paradigm change: it enables new small-low cost solutions for new processes or to retrofit existing plants. The system is designed as a modular unit to create any production capacity required by clients on-site. Due to a reduced size, it offers a production on demand, delocalised and with high flexibility of production and portability, it gives the chance to develop new business strategies and allowing increased flexibility of the energy input. Thus, the DESTINY concept perfectly fits to energy efficiency policies for the performance of the next generation renewable based electricity grids.
Due to the novelty of DESTINY’s outcomes, it is expected to have a high potential for market application covering a real need and demand from energy intensive industries processing raw materials.
DESTINY will deliver a new eco-efficient solution based on microwave technology and being developed to design a new radical versatile process that will able to face different industrial sectors.
The aim of the project DESTINY is to get the technology much closer to an industrial production rate guaranteeing scalability, replicability and robustness. Moreover, the fully electrical DESTINY module has the final goal of a reduced direct dependence of energy intensive industries on fossil fuels; thus, the idea contributes to reach the Paris agreement goals.
DESTINY will give energy intensive sectors the chance to replace their standard heating technologies averagely cutting by 30% the required energy for production [kWh/kg] decreasing the CO2 emissions in more than 40%, and with additional proportional derivate reduction of SOx and NOx.
The specific results expected in the project are:
- A portable ”ready-to-use” container size microwave pilot plant (prototype) with a production capacity higher than 20 kg/h by a single cell kiln, and able to reach working temperatures over 1000 °C
- With a design enabling an array of microwave kiln cells considering 130 kg/h per cell, which can be able of commercial operational production rates
- With a minimum of 30% of energy savings on the process (due to the use of microwave technology and the use of advanced control strategies)
- Reducing operation costs between 15-30%
- Implementation of a “switch-and-go” processing concept
- A minimum of 10 times faster heating up of the production process
- Reducing SOx, NOx, CO2 and CO emission in 40% (minimum)
- Avoiding combustion (also via targeted new emission monitoring and control strategies, with high reduction of particle matter)
- Guarantee safe operation for operators and surrounding in all the applications of the MW technology in its working environment and in compliance with related EU directives and recommendations
- User manuals, best practices, health and safety documentation
- Success KPIs assessment
The DESTINY concept will be proved in two demo sites located in Spain and Germany covering high energy demanding sectors of strategic interest as Ceramic (Pigments), Cement (Calcined clay) and Steel (Sinter, iron pellets/sponge iron (DRI), ZnO) to validate the critical parameters of the developed technology in relevant environment. It will be implemented as two feeding modules per demo site and one mobile microwave kiln module and product treatment.
Considering the improvements in the DESTINY’s MW process, an exploitation strategy will be developed to maximize the potential of the project results analysing and evaluating the possible exploitation routes, the target users and markets, and reviewing all internal or external aspects from the potential business viewpoint.