Iron and Steel Industry - Wast Heat Recovery

The energy intensive global steel manufacturing industry is confronted with substantial energy efficiency and sustainability challenges. Major sources of energy consumption in the steel manufacturing process include the blast and electric arc furnaces, as well as a number of waste heat sources including reheating and heat treatment furnaces.

Due to the intermittent nature and variable temperature of waste heat resources often available in the iron and steel industry, it is important for an energy recovery system to be both efficient and responsive.

Kalina Cycle® Application in Steel Manufacturing Process

Kalina Cycle® Application in Steel Manufacturing Process Adapted from, Technology Development for Environmentally Harmonized Steelmaking Process. Report from OECD. NEDO Project, CO2 Ultimate Reduction in Steelmaking Process by Innovative Technology for Cool Earth 50 (COURSE 50). March 2010.

Japanese Steel Manufacturing Industry

The Japanese steel manufacturing industry is one of the most significant producers of high value steel in the world, with annual production in the order of 100 million tonnes.

Since the oil shock of the 1970’s, the Japanese steel industry has implemented major energy conservation technologies including the recovery of waste heat, in an effort to reduce energy input costs as well as reducing the intensity of carbon dioxide emissions. Today, the Japanese steel industry is one of the most innovative steel industries in the world, and are widely recognised as leaders in highly efficient and sustainable steel production.

Through the Japan Iron and Steel Federation (JISF) which represents the major Japanese steel manufacturers, NEDO has recently identified the Kalina Cycle® one of the most suitable technologies for further improving the energy efficiency of the Japanese steel industry.

Through the Japan Iron & Steel Federation (JISF), NEDO coordinates the energy efficiency activities of the following corporations.

  • JFE Steel Corporation
  • Kobe Steel, Ltd.
  • Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd.
  • Nippon Steel Corporation
  • Nippon Steel Engineering Co., Ltd.
  • Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.

Kashima Steel Works - Enhanced Energy Efficiency Power Plant

The impressive Kashima Steel Works in Japan, operated by Sumitomo Metals has been successfully recovering waste process heat and generating 3,450 kW of sustainable power since September 1999, through the installation of a Kalina Cycle® system.

The Kalina Cycle® Power Plant installed at the Kashima Steel Works in an enhanced energy efficiency application, was the first commercial application of the Kalina Cycle®. More than a decade after installation, the Kalina Cycle® power plant continues to operate efficiently and reliably.

KEY STATISTICS - Kalina Cycle® Power Plant
Commissioned: September 1999
Location: Kashima, Japan
Power output: 3,450 kW
Heat source: 98oC waste industrial process heat (cooling water)


The Kalina Cycle® Power Plant installed at the Kashima Steel Works, successfully demonstrates the thermodynamic advantages and the robust performance of the Kalina Cycle®. At the Kashima Steel Works, the Kalina Cycle® is able to recover thermal energy from the cooling water discharged by the converter gas duct of the steel plant, and generate electricity. Before the installation of the Kalina Cycle® at the Kashima Steel Works, the recovery of waste heat was not feasible as estimates by Sumitomo Metals¹ indicated that alternative low temperature technologies such as the Organic Rankine Cycle could only generate 60% of the power now generated by the Kalina Cycle®. More than a decade on, the Kalina Cycle® technology has major implications for the global steel manufacturing industry.

Developer - Project Ownership

The Kalina Cycle® Power Plant at the Kashima Steel Works was constructed and is owned and operated by Sumitomo Metals (Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.). The intellectual property relating to the Kalina Cycle® systems, including the control systems and remote monitoring of Kalina Cycle® power plants is protected by patents held by Global Geothermal Limited.

1 - Kalina Cycle® Power Generation System (Technical Publication), Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd

Kalina Cycle® - Power Plant Performance

  • Since installation of the Kalina Cycle® Power Plant at the Kashima Steel Works in September 1999, the power plant has operated on a trouble-free basis with a capacity factor above 96%.
  • Performance tests conducted by the Japanese Ministry of International Trade & Industry (MITI) confirm that the performance of the Kalina Cycle® Power Plant exceeds both the design specifications and the expectations of Sumitomo Metals.
  • The achieved electrical power output of the power plant corresponds to that calculated from the energy-mass balances of the Kalina Cycle®.
  • Legal requirements require turbines to be inspected every 4 years, with all inspections confirming that no defects were present.

An image of the integrated Kalina Cycle® Power Plant installed to recover energy from the cooling water from the OCGR (Oxygen Converter Gas Recovery) of the No. 2 Steel Manufacturing Plant at the Kashima Steel Works, is shown below. The operation of the Kalina Cycle® Power Plant is continuous during normal operations of the Steel Manufacturing Plant.

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