thyssenkrupp unveils its vision of the future

Over 300 participants from 31 countries attended the fifth Future Symposium organised by German tinplate manufacturer thyssenkrupp Rasselstein. 

Held under the theme “The Magic of Doing it,” the symposium featured both internal and  external speakers discussing the future of packaging steel. 

The event highlighted innovative  solutions the company is developing to address current and future challenges in the  packaging industry. 

thyssenkrupp Rasselstein is committed to sustainability through a comprehensive  approach. “With increasingly climate-friendly production, a strong focus on the circular  economy, and a high emphasis on occupational health and safety, we ensure that both  nature and people benefit from our products,” explains Dr. Peter Kirchesch, Sustainability  Manager at thyssenkrupp Rasselstein. 

“By developing and implementing technological  innovations, we continually enhance our ecological, social, and economic performance, creating value for both us and our customers.” 

Dr. Carmen Ostwald, Head of Business Development for bluemint® Steel at thyssenkrupp  Steel Europe, took the stage to demonstrate the company’s significant progress in its green  transformation toward climate-neutral steel. The steel manufacturer aims to reduce its CO₂  emissions by nearly one-third by 2030, with the goal of producing climate-neutral steel by  2045. “This is also crucial for our customers,” Dr. Ostwald explained. “From 2034 on, steel  manufacturers will be responsible for 100% of their CO₂ emission costs within the EU  emissions trading system. However, there is no reason to be pessimistic. We are already  offering our CO₂-reduced bluemint® Steel as a pathway to an emission-free future.” 

Avoiding carbon dioxide on the last few metres 

During engaging discussions with Rasselstein experts, industry peers, and exhibitors,  attendees of the Future Symposium explored additional measures to reduce CO₂ emissions  at the Andernach plant. One notable innovation is the iReku® from Kueppers Solutions, the  first 3D-printed burner with optimized heat recovery. This device can save around 3,000  tons of CO₂ annually in tinplate production. 

The energy-efficient recuperators used in the  annealing plants at thyssenkrupp Rasselstein help reduce natural gas consumption by about  10 percent. 

The tinplate manufacturer is also focusing on reducing Scope 1 emissions by  substituting natural gas in the production process. 

“We are actively working to avoid  emissions at the plant, effectively tackling them in the final stages,” explains Dr. Burkhard  Kaup from the Transformation team at thyssenkrupp Rasselstein. “With our new panel  coating line, we can save around 1,100 tons of CO₂ per year. Additionally, by transporting  hot strip coils from thyssenkrupp Steel to our Andernach plant using locomotives that run  on electricity and biodiesel, we can avoid a further 2,000 tons of CO₂ annually.” 

Dr. Kaup adds, “Our long-term goal is to entirely eliminate Scope 1 emissions. As a first step,  we are actively researching alternatives to natural gas. For instance, Rasselstein is an  industrial partner in two projects funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic  Affairs and Climate Protection, exploring the use of hydrogen as a fuel gas.” 

One key takeaway from the Future Symposium is the urgent need for proactive measures  against climate change, leveraging the solutions already available in the market. “The Magic  of Doing it” aptly captured the event’s theme, emphasising the importance of immediate  action for anyone looking to contribute to the sustainable transformation of the packaging industry. 

This call to action was reinforced by various external speakers who shared their  success stories. Ernesto García-Balibrea, Managing Director of Bemasa Caps, discussed the  seamless integration of bluemint® Steel in the screw caps for jam manufacturer Hero.  Benny Walkenbach, Head of Sales at Westerwald Brauerei, showcased their new 5-liter  party kegs made from CO₂-reduced tinplate. Additionally, Martti Lemendik, CEO of  Metaprint, highlighted the benefits of switching to bluemint® Steel for aerosol can  manufacturers. 

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