From gas to electricity, with support from Electron

More and more companies are switching from fossil fuels such as gas to electricity as their main source of energy for their industrial processes. This is not only better for the environment, but also has several other benefits. In general, electrically powered equipment is not only more energy efficient, but also has lower maintenance costs. Electron has extensive experience in the electrification of gas-fired processes in heavy industries such as petrochemicals and refineries, among others. We would be happy to help you realize this transition.

A high efficiency of up to 95%

Less CO2 emissions, zero if renewable energy is used

Excellent temperature control: +/- 1°C

Elimination of thermal NOx and SOx emissions

Safer and quieter production environment

From fossil to renewable

The vast majority of industrial processes, at the moment, is still gas-fired. The financial and environmental benefits however, for industrial companies of using electricity instead of fossil fuels are increasing. Today, about 20 percent of the energy consumed in industry is electricity. More and more industrial companies, supported by policy makers and utilities, plan for the adoption of electric technologies for their current fuel use.

Of all the fuel that industrial companies use for energy, about 50 percent could be replaced with electricity, using technologies available today. This includes all energy required to generate heat for industrial processes up to approximately 1,000 degrees Celsius. Electrification of industrial processes that require heat up to approximately 1,000 degrees Celsius does not require a fundamental change in the industrial process setup, but rather a replacement of a piece of equipment, such as a boiler or furnace, running on conventional fuel with a piece of electric equipment.

The process

At Electron, we have extensive experience in electrifying processes in various industries, including oil and gas, asphalt processing and steel. Based on your process, wishes and requirements in terms of temperature, for example, we examine whether it is possible to carry out gas-fired processes with electric heating. We design a concept oven that performs on a similar level or even better than the gas-fired variant. In this design we take hapex and opex insights, control systems and the associated infrastructure into account. During this process we work closely with you as a customer and with our supplier Kanthal. This is usually followed by a lab-scale test (lab-scale unit). If the test provides the expected results, then the next phase is a larger pilot-project on site. Once this test provides the correct results, we will replace or retrofit the existing furnaces, after which the electrification is complete.

Several benefits

Electrification of the fuel that industrial companies use for energy has several benefits. Generally, electrically driven equipment is only slightly more energy efficient than the conventional option, but it has lower maintenance costs, and, in the case of the industrial boiler, the investment cost of the electrical equipment is lower. And, if zero-carbon electricity is consumed, the greenhouse-gas emissions of the industrial site lower significantly.

Hybrid setups

For applications that require low or medium temperature heat it is possible to partially electrify the heat demand, which allows for flexible switching between consumption of electricity and fossil fuels. With a dual or hybrid boiler setup, steam can be produced from both electricity and fossil fuels. Based on various reasons, a dual or hybrid setup could prove attractive for industrial sites, even though the up-front investments are higher than a single setup.

First, fuel costs can be lower. In some regions the electricity price is increasingly fluctuating. Full electrification might not be attractive given a high average electricity price. But hybrid or dual setups can allow industrial sites to take advantage of the lower electricity prices when renewable sources like solar and wind are at peak production.

Our method

At Electron, we are pleased to discuss and explain our many value adding technologies and to think along with our customers. We have extensive experience in designing and manufacturing custom electric heating elements and systems, furnace accessories and insulation materials. Our employees will be happy to advise you on the best solution for your application.

More information?

Please contact us if you are interested to learn about then things we can do to support your transition to electricity and we would be pleased to discuss and explain our many value adding technologies within this specialist area.

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