Project completion

Scrap tires as an alternative fuel for cement production in Kuwait

Press Release / January 18, 2018

The production of cement is a high-temperature process that requires large amounts of fuel. Cement production produces very high greenhouse gas emissions, which can be reduced by using alternative fuels. As part of a test run at a cement plant in Kuwait, the effects of co-combustion of scrap tires on the environment and product quality were examined. The project has now been completed.

© Fraunhofer UMSICHT
View of the calciner tower and torque tube of production line 1.
© Fraunhofer UMSICHT
Scrap tire delivery.

Background

As CO2 is released not only during combustion but also during the production process, cement production produces huge emissions of greenhouse gases. In Europe, the use of alternative waste-based fuels is a widespread practice that has been used for a long time. In Germany, the share of alternative fuels in cement plants in 2014 was 63.4%. With huge landfills for scrap tires in Kuwait, the Kuwait Cement Company (KCC) plans to use scrap tires to fire coal so that coal can be replaced as fuel. This could lead to a reduction of CO2 emissions.

The KCC produces 5 million tons of cement per year for the construction sector in Kuwait. There, the company operates a plant with two independent production lines. All raw materials such as limestone, sand, copper slag, iron ore, bauxite and also hard coal are imported and transported about the Shuaiba port to the factory. The plant is fired 100% with hard coal.


Workshop with subsequent test run

At an expert workshop, the topic was introduced to the participants of the Environment Public Authority (EPA) Kuwait and the KCC as part of a theoretical training course. Subsequently, a test run was carried out with scrap tires as fuel. This test, which was supervised by Fraunhofer UMSICHT, involved a comprehensive measurement program under various conditions with different quantities of scrap tires. The aim of the experiment was to evaluate whether the addition of scrap tires has a negative effect on the production process, product quality or the environment. Finally, Martin Meiller (Group Manager Energy from Biomass and Waste), Dr. Peter Hense (Group Manager Recycling Technologies) and Dr.-Ing. Robert Daschner (Head of Department Thermal Process Technologies) presented the results from the project to the responsible persons (environmental authorities, operator of cement factory) on site.