Currently, it does exist the possibility and the need to improve the energy efficiency in industrial furnaces. This project creates and implements a methodology for researching, designing and constructing multisectoral furnaces (ceramics, cement, glass and nonferrous metals, primarily aluminum) that should lead to an improvement of 20% in the energy efficiency.
Following aspects are studied: 1) hybrid heating systems from the combination of new systems (plasma, microwave, etc.) and conventional (fuel, electricity, induction). 2) New isolation designs, and new refractory materials with improved thermal properties. 3) waste recovery systems to optimize energy efficiency and recycling , garbage and waste material. The methodology includes traditional studies and engineering calculations, and advanced numerical modeling, as well as two experimental facilities: a melting aluminum furnace demonstrator at semi-industrial scale and a pilot scale glass furnace.
EDEFU is the first european project funded by EC that has achieved the goal of gathering together different european companies from the energy intensive industries sector into a R&D collaborative project. The overall objective is to improve the energy efficiency in the IIE (Industries Intensive in Energy use) and reduce the environmental impact. This project focuses on various types of industrial furnaces, creating and implementing a methodology of study, design and construction that can be applied to different industrial sectors. The developments and progress should lead to a cutback of 20% in the energy consumption if compared with current systems, as well as meet industrial demands and reduce pollutant emissions.
The developments will be integrated and addressed by Thermoeconomic analysis and optimization of the furnaces , as well as by life cycle assessment of their construction, maintenance and operation. Finally the results will be validated according to criteria set by the industrial partners in the project CIRCE’s work on the project focuses on one hand in modeling and simulation of aluminum furnaces, both, in the small size demonstrator, as well as in the industrial full-size extrapolation. This includes physical modeling and numerical rendering of the differential equations of transport, mass, momentum, energy and chemical species in fluids, solids and cast pieces, using and developing appropriate approaches to complex phenomena such as turbulence, chemical reactions, thermal radiation and special means of heating.
In addition, CIRCE is the leader of horizontal tasks, such as thermoeconomic analysis and life cycle assessment, which will apply to all types of furnaces, especially aluminum, glass and cement.