Volvo investigates fossil fuel-free steel for future car bodies
Volvo and the Swedish steel manufacturer SSAB have signed a new partnership to develop fossil fuel-free, high quality steel for use in Volvo’s future car bodies.
The two companies hope the new technology will lower CO2 emissions by removing the industry’s reliance on the fossil fuels normally used in steel production.
Today, the steel industry accounts for around seven percent of global carbon emissions, as the main method of production involves firing iron ore in coking coal-powered blast furnaces. SSAB’s new method will replace the blast furnace and coking coal with renewable electricity and an electric arc furnace. An added benefit of the system is that it can more efficiently use recycled steel scrap as a raw material, which further reduces CO2 emissions.
By 2026, SSAB aims to put its new fossil fuel-free steel on the market at a commercial scale – and Volvo will be the company’s first customer to use the new steel in its production cars.
“As we continuously reduce our total carbon footprint, we know that steel is a major area for further progress,” says Volvo’s CEO, Håkan Samuelsson. “The collaboration with SSAB on fossil-free steel development could give significant emission reductions in our supply chain.”