Sustainability in Ironmaking: The Rise of Direct Reduction

  • Thomas P. Battle
Conference paper


Modern-day direct reduction of iron first developed as a small-scale, low capital and operating cost alternative to the blast furnace. Since commercialization of continuous DR technology in the late 1960s, the market for the products of direct reduction has grown to more than 74 million tonnes in 2012. The initial advantages of DR plants over BF facilities have grown over the years, for several reasons, including the increased size of DR modules, lower energy and emissions (particularly CO2), along with the flexibility to use a number of different reductants. The development of DR technology over the past forty years will be emphasized in this presentation, including recent developments that allow for even more direct sustainability comparisons with the iron blast furnace — and even combine the two technologies for improved synergies. Also briefly discussed will be the possibilities of using direct reduction for non-ferrous ores.


Ironmaking Direct Reduction DRI HBI 


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Copyright information

© TMS (The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas P. Battle
    • 1
  1. 1.Research and Development Technology Center Midrex TechnologiesPinevilleUSA

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