The European stage is also familiar space for the IOB. At the annual A.SPIRE event, not only new project ideas for the upcoming Processes4Planet calls were discussed, but also the ongoing large-scale project HyInHeat was presented.
In the morning, shortly after 7 a.m., the Thalys to Brussels rolls out of Aachen’s main station. On board is our colleague Dominik Büschgens, who will participate in the Annual A.SPIRE Brokerage Event and the Processes4Planet Projects Forum. This year’s event, which took place on September 20, is becoming increasingly popular, as evidenced by the large number of participants. Representatives of the 10 different A.SPIRE sectors ranging from Steel to Non-ferrous Metals and Ceramics or Chemicals were present.
The event was introduced by Àngels Orduña (Executive Director A.SPIRE), followed by Jürgen Tiedje from the European Commission. Besides the presentation of the current Processes4Planet calls for 2024, there were also numerous pitches of potential project ideas for these calls. Afterwards, there was enough time at round tables to discuss these proposals, to identify and convince potential partners or simply to get interesting insights.
After a substantial lunch in an excellent location in the middle of Brussels at the Botanical Garden, the second round of the event started. The Processes4Planet Projects Forum aimed to report on ongoing and completed projects. This will strengthen the exchange between projects, especially young consortia can learn from the experienced ones. This was solved with four panel discussions, each covering the current topics of the energy-intensive industry and therefore of highest interest for the IOB. The topics were Decarbonization, Electrification and Energy Efficiency, Circularity of Resources and at the end, in a very large round, “Making it Happen”, the acceleration of progress towards large-scale deployment from ongoing or completed projects.
The afternoon was rounded off with a poster session including networking cocktails. The HyInHeat project, coordinated by the IOB, also had a place at the poster session. Besides enjoying the cocktails, our colleague Dominik Büschgens answered questions about the project for interested attendees. The consortium of 28 partners has set the goal of demonstrating the use of hydrogen as a fuel in the high-temperature processes of the steel and aluminium industry. In the energy-intensive processes, replacing fossil fuels with green hydrogen holds great potential for reducing the CO2 emissions. The project, which was launched at the beginning of this year, is part of the Horizon Europe funding program and the Processes4Planet Partnership. The funding amount on the part of the EU is 17.7 million Euros, the total costs of the project amount to almost 24 million Euros.
On his way back to Aachen, Dominik didn’t miss the chance to make a short detour to one of the sights in Brussels: the Manneken Pis. This was documented with the obligatory tourist selfie.
After a relaxed and, above all, punctual ride on the Thalys back to Aachen, the excursion on the European stage was also completed. Now it is time to evaluate all impressions with the colleagues in order to contribute to the current round of Processes4Planet topics with our own work.