Mining provides the fundamental raw minerals driving much of our modern world. At Supercritical, we are dedicated to fostering circularity within our products, ensuring end-of-life electrolysers find new purpose through recycling and reprocessing core materials. As new technologies and industries emerge, primary production remains crucial. OZ Minerals, now a BHP company, aims to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% from FY2020 levels and achieve net zero operation GHG by 2050. OZ Minerals produces copper, a powerful and crucial commodity underpinning our electrical products and electricity systems. Together, we are shaping a sustainable and responsible future for our planet.
McKinsey estimates that the power consumption from the mining sector as a whole contributes about 0.4 gigatons of CO2e. OZ Minerals produces less than 0.1% of this due to the scale of its operations yet the industry must move as a whole to succeed in its goals to decarbonise.
Three use cases were explored:
Case #01: Consumed waste heat available from a theoretical downstream copper concentrate roaster was able to reduce electrolyser system energy demand during electrolysis by 25%.
Case #02: Supplied hydrogen for site fuel cell trucks. It was found that meeting the demand of 350 bar of hydrogen with Supercritical’s high pressure electrolyser would reduce compression energy by 10x vs an electrolyser operating at 10bara, and reducing the compression and cooling stages to 1 from 3.
Case #03: Supplied green hydrogen as a feedstock for copper sulfate reduction, it was found that to meet the demand of 2,000 tonnes of hydrogen per annum, a reduction of 12,129 tonnes of CO2 per year when compared to natural gas.