4 October 2021

Hanson sees net zero fuel trial success at Ribblesdale

A cement kiln at Hanson’s Ribblesdale works in Lancashire, UK, has successfully been operated using a net zero fuel as part of a world first demonstration using hydrogen technology.

© Arisa Chattasa/Unsplash

The trial, made possible by Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) funding provided through the Mineral Products Association (MPA), used a mix of 100% net zero fuels including hydrogen for commercial scale cement manufacture for the very first time.

During the demonstration, which is the culmination of several years of work, the proportion of fuels in the cement kiln’s main burner was gradually increased to a wholly net zero mix. The mix consisted of tanker delivered hydrogen as well as meat and bone meal and glycerine – by-products from the rendering and biodiesel industries respectively.

‘The trial demonstrated the pathway to moving away from using fossil fuels in cement and concrete production,’ explains environmental sustainability manager Iain Walpole.

The trial at Ribblesdale follows a BEIS-funded feasibility study in 2019 which demonstrated that a combination of biomass, hydrogen and plasma energy could be used to eliminate all of fossil fuel CO2 emissions from cement manufacturing.