A group of Italian companies comprised of Snam, Rina, Bormioli Luigi, Bormioli Rocco, Stara Glass, Università degli Studi di Genova, Stazione Sperimentale del Vetro, Ifrf Italia, Sgpro and Rjc Soft started collaborations to reduce emissions in the glass industry using hydrogen.
The ‘Divina’ project (Decarbonisation of the Glass Industry: Hydrogen and New Equipment), coordinated by Snam, Rina and Bormioli, aims to reduce emissions in the glass melting stage, which accounts for more than 50% of total energy consumption throughout the production process.
The project will also define and optimise the design rules for future furnaces, known as ‘Furnaces 4.0’, guaranteeing the best performance even at 100%.
The project will assess the results of introducing an increasing proportion of hydrogen blended with natural gas into existing melting furnaces operating under regular production conditions. Testing a large proportion of hydrogen on operational furnaces will be an opportunity to evaluate the compatibility of hydrogen combustion with glass material in real industrial production contexts following appropriate testing in laboratories.
The availability of an energy source such as hydrogen can provide a viable solution by optimising its use in terms of energy and emissions and managing production and transport challenges.
Marco Alverà, Snam CEO, said, “Hydrogen will play a key role in decarbonising energy-intensive sectors such as glass production in order to meet domestic and European climate targets. This project complements what we are already doing in the steel, rail transport and ceramics sectors. Snam will be able to draw on its infrastructure and expertise to facilitate the introduction of hydrogen in industry, bringing benefits in terms of economic growth.”
Ugo Salerno, President and CEO of Rina, added, “Following the first test with a mix of natural gas and 30% hydrogen in steel processing that we carried out in May, our expertise and laboratories are also being used for the ‘Divina’ project, an important milestone towards the decarbonisation of another of the most significant sectors in the Italian economy.”
Vincenzo Di Giuseppantonio, CEO of the Bormioli Luigi Group, commented, “ The partnership with leading players in the energy sector, the glass industry and academia makes the Divina project a sound and concrete proposal for a path to green transition and sustainability.”