thyssenkrupp offers customers ways to reduce CO2 emissions
Germany’s only tinplate manufacturer, thyssenkrupp Rasselstein GmbH, is expanding its sustainability strategy and now offers customers in the packaging industry additional options for reducing CO2 emissions.
The company now has added tinplate made from CO2 reduced bluemintSteel to its portfolio for which alternative input materials are used in the steel production process.
This primarily reduces the use of coal for the reduction process in the blast furnace, resulting in real reduction in carbon emissions.
Additional carbon reduction is possible by using the innovative packaging steel grade rasselsteinSolidflex in the production of Easy Open Ends for food cans and in the tops and bottoms of aerosol cans.
This is the result of a study carried out by Sphera Solutions on behalf of thyssenkrupp Rasselstein in accordance with ISO standards DIN ISO 14040 / 14044.
“Based on the reductions in thickness of the material made possible by rasselstein Solidflex, significant CO2 reduction can be achieved. This is very interesting for our customers who want to reduce their carbon footprint,” said Carmen Tschage, Head of Communications + Market Development at thyssenkrupp Rasselstein GmbH.
The results were confirmed in a critical review by TÜV Süd.
Reducing CO2 by using innovative packaging steel grades
rasselsteinSolidflex is a packaging steel grade which is hard but also particularly formable. It therefore allows the use of thinner material while maintaining the stability of cans.
Featuring an elongation of more than 5% and yield strengths of 600 – 750 MPa, the material is particularly suitable for applications that require not only high strength but also considerable forming potential – such as Easy Open Ends for food cans or aerosol can tops and bottoms.
The special feature: reducing the material thicknesses of these components also allows the thicknesses of the can bodies to be reduced.
For this purpose, thyssenkrupp Rasselstein offers its customers special packaging steel grades that are optimally suited to the overall system. The Technical Customer Service at thyssenkrupp Rasselstein will gladly advise on all available options.
The study reviewed the saving of CO2 equivalents for tinplate inserts in food cans with a filling volume of 425 millilitres.
The technology of the innovative packaging steel rasselstein® Solidflex enables a thickness reduction of the material for Easy Open Ends. This results in a reduction in CO2 emissions. The thickness of an Easy Open End can be reduced from 0.18 mm to 0.16 mm.
As a result, the weight of the cans is reduced by 1.98%. Looking at the impact on the carbon footprint, this measure achieves a saving of 2.14% in material use. Per end alone, this amounts to 2.9 g of carbon.
The potential can be expanded even further if, in addition to Easy Open Ends made of rasselsteinSolidflex, optimised packaging steel grades are also used for the body and bottom.
In this way, the weight of food cans and the carbon footprint can be reduced by 13.52%. This results in material-related CO2 reduction of 18.4 g per can.
“The studies therefore show that even a simple change in the packaging steel grade to rasselstein Solidflex can produce clearly measurable CO2 reduction. Especially in combination with our other optimised materials, emissions can be significantly reduced,” Tschage added.
Aerosol cans are also offering significant savings potential. For example, the weight of an aerosol can with a brimful capacity of 378 millilitres can be reduced by 14.34%. For packaging steel-related CO2 emissions, this means savings of 14.41% or 22.0 g per aerosol can. In this case, tops and bottoms are made from rasselstein Solidflex and the bodies from a suitable packaging steel from the thyssenkrupp Rasselstein portfolio.
The first CO2-reduced tinplate cans went into production in March
Another important element in thyssenkrupp Rasselstein’s sustainability strategy is tinplate made from bluemintSteel. This steel, produced at thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG, was used at the Andernach-based tinplate producer for the first time in the spring.
bluemintSteel is available in bluemintpure and bluemintrecycled versions. Except in their specific carbon emissions, these variants do not differ in their material properties from existing steel grades, retaining the customary high quality of rasselstein packaging steel.
The products are examples for the first successful transformation under thyssenkrupp Steel’s climate strategy.
“In the coming years we will be investing enormously in innovations and technologies that will bring our customers ever closer to the common goal of climate neutrality and a green steel product,” said Tschage.