Get more insights about fossil-free steel

SSAB aims to create a fossil-free value chain together with our partners and customers and secure our position as the driving force in the green transition of the steel industry. Already in 2021, we delivered the first fossil-free steel, a steel made from hydrogen-reduced iron produced at HYBRIT´s pilot plant in Luleå Sweden, to a customer. In 2026, we plan to bring fossil-free steel to market as a commercial product.

3 reasons why fossil-free steel is the real "green" alternative

  1. The process involves no fossil fuels or CO2 emissions. In traditional steelmaking, the main source of CO2 emissions comes from the use of coal and coke to remove oxygen from iron ore. By replacing this with a direct reduction process using hydrogen, coal is completely removed from the equation.
  1. The only by-product is water – and even that’s debatable. When hydrogen replaces coal as a reduction agent, the only by-product is water instead of carbon dioxide. And even then, it’s not really a by-product, since the water is used to produce more hydrogen, thus creating a closed cycle.
  1. Paves the way for complete CO2 elimination. If the hydrogen used in the reduction process has been produced with fossil-free electricity, in other words, green hydrogen, then virtually all CO2 emissions from production have been eliminated making it a truly fossil-free steel.
Reduction with coal
Reduction with hydrogen

Download your guide to navigate in the world of green steel

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Emissions reductions in the steel industry - A guideline on green steel
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What is fossil-free steel?

Fossil free means that a product or service has been created without using fossil fuels or fossil raw materials. Fossil-free steel is made without creating carbon emissions and by using fossil-free energy sources. All of the iron ore used in SSAB Fossil-free™ steel will come from fossil-free mining in the future.

How is fossil-free steel made?

The first step in making steel is to turn iron ore into iron by removing the oxygen. This has traditionally been done using coal and coke in the blast furnace process. However, this step will now be done using hydrogen gas through the HYBRIT process. The byproduct of this process is water, not CO2. Fossil-free electricity will be used to produce hydrogen from water via electrolysis. The end result of the HYBRIT process is solid iron (sponge iron) which is then melted in an electric arc furnace. Across the entire process, only fossil-free electricity and fuels will be used – resulting in fossil-free steel as an end product.

Learn about the process here

How do I know that SSAB's steel is truly fossil-free?

SSAB has invested heavily in fossil-free steel and as part of this, the production process will be documented in an Environmental Product Declaration (EPD). EPDs are third-party reviewed and follow strict European and international standards.

What customer products and industries can use fossil-free steel?

Fossil-free steel will have the same properties and quality as its traditionally produced counterpart, so it will perform in the same way in all industrial applications. Fossil-free steel will match the current standards of steel and will be suitable for use just as today’s steel.

Why will fossil-free steel have a higher price?

Fossil-free steel is a premium product with a higher price than regular fossil-based steel products. The main cost-drivers for fossil-free steel are the investments in production and infrastructure, to switch from coal to fossil-free electricity and hydrogen, from natural gas to biogas, and from iron ore pellets to HYBRIT sponge iron.

How can I find out more about SSAB Fossil-free™ steel?

If you cannot find the information you are looking for here, please contact us here. Or get in touch with your SSAB sales contact directly.

FAQ: SSAB Fossil-free™ steel

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Learn more about the HYBRIT research

HYBRIT is a unique research initiative with its eye on the future. In the research library, you may find relevant articles and reports to get more in-depth knowledge about the production of fossil-free iron ore pellets.

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Contact us now and join the fossil-free future

Discover how SSAB’s fossil-free steel can lead your business towards increased sustainability. Fill in the contact form below and we will be in touch with more information.