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TRUMPF Hüttinger

Fossil-to-Electric Transformation

We help you with the electrification of your industrial heating processes.

The need to switch from fossil fuels to electrical energy (F2E) is becoming increasingly evident, as the electrification of industrial processes based on fossil fuels is one of the most important strategies for avoiding CO2 emissions. Various electrical heating concepts already exist. Each requires specific electrical or electromagnetic power supply systems. TRUMPF Hüttinger offers the complete range of power supplies for this purpose, from direct current to microwave generators. These solutions will facilitate your path to decarbonization and help you achieve your ambitious sustainability goals.

Electrification of industrial processes

1. CO2-neutral electric power generation

For example through solar or wind power.

2. TRUMPF Hüttinger Power Conversion Systems

Our TruConvert series offers flexible solutions for many storage applications.

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3. Power supply system

Power distribution to private end users and industrial customers.

4. TRUMPF Hüttinger Power Supplies

With its DC, MF, and RF and microwave generators, TRUMPF Hüttinger provides current with the required frequency and power.

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5. Electrification of industrial processes

Plasma processing from:

  • Nitrogen fixation (incl. NH3 production)
  • Methane plasma pyrolysis, which enables the production of turquoise H2 and/or C allotropes such as graphene, carbon nanotubes (CNT), fullerenes and diamonds
  • C2H2 production
  • CO2 recycling
  • Waste utilization

Application examples for Fossil to Electric (F2E)

Retrofitting existing gas and oil burners is a hot topic in industries such as metal, cement or glass. Depending on the materials to be processed, precisely defined process parameters such as temperature,
temperature ranges, pressures, flow rates, etc. must be implemented. Various types of plasma can be used to create these application-specific process conditions.
Each type of plasma requires specific excitation frequencies to ignite and maintain its plasma.
Plasma processes can be used for various F2E applications, e.g.:

Metal melting
Glass melting
Chemical processes
Aluminum melting
Nitrogen fixation
Cement production
E Fuels (Power to X)
LoHc (liquid organic hydrogen carrier)
Waste utilization
CO2 recycling

TRUMPF Hüttinger Product Portfolio

The electrification potential of the European industrial sectors is estimated at around 800 TWh/a. The largest percentage is made up of the chemical, paper, food, glass and ceramics industries.

The generators in our product portfolio offer a power range from DC to GHz with output powers of up to several hundred kW. We offer you solutions that accelerate your path to decarbonization and help you achieve your sustainability goals.

Process power supply for the Fossil-to-Electric (F2E) Transformation

Each electric-powered heating concept requires specific electrical or electromagnetic power supply systems. TRUMPF Hüttinger offers the complete range of power supplies for this purpose, from direct current to microwave generators

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Fossil-to-electric heating concepts

Dielectric RF heating

Dielectric heating, also called radio frequency heating, is a process of heating insulators or dielectrics by exposing them to high-frequency electromagnetic fields. The heat is generated by the interaction of the high-frequency fields with the dipolar molecules in the material. The molecules attempt to adapt to the rapidly changing electric field, causing them to rub against each other and generate heat through internal friction. This process is particularly effective in materials with a high dielectric constant, such as water or plastics. Dielectric heating is commonly used in industrial applications to dry, heat or melt materials. TRUMPF Hüttinger offers a very wide range of high-frequency power generators and matching networks (so-called matchboxes). We can also design appropriate applicators on customer request.

Solid state microwave generators use semiconductor components to generate microwaves. The generators generate high irradiance at very high frequencies, which stimulate the (di-polar) molecules (e.g., water, plastics, glass, ceramics, foams, etc.) to oscillate. These oscillations create friction and heat, which heats up the process material (workpiece). Compared to conventional magnetron generators, TRUMPF Hüttinger solid-state generators are more precise and efficient. They enable more balanced heating and reduce unnecessary energy losses. TRUMPF Hüttinger SSPG microwave generators can be pulsed (30 ns) and, thanks to frequency sweeping or switching, enable a high level of adaptation to special heating tasks, some of which were unsolvable previously.

Inductive heating

A medium-frequency power generator uses a so-called outer circle (adaptation) and a metal inductor to create a medium-frequency magnetic field in an electrically conductive heating element (e.g. cold graphite crucible), or an electrical eddy current is generated for the process material (workpiece) itself, which in turn (similar to the resistive heating process) has losses with the metal atoms through interaction and thus heats up the material. A characteristic feature and a particular advantage is that there is no direct contact between the inductor and the heating element or the process material. When designing heating systems, TRUMPF Hüttinger has the right power supplies for a wide range of applications and can solve customer-specific issues.

Plasma-based heating

Plasma Burner Torch:

In many industrial processes today, natural gas-driven flames are used to generate the process heat. In order to achieve certain temperature limits, the past international climate conferences have agreed to make CO2-generating processes much more expensive worldwide, so that in a few years the above-mentioned warming tasks will no longer be able to cover their costs. 

In many industrial heating processes, a fundamentally different heating method can be used (dielectric, resistive, inductive heating, see previous examples). In some other processes there is no real generic alternative to a "flame".

A plasma-based flame (plasma burner torch) can be a solution in this case. A process gas (H2, CO2, N2, O2 , Ar, air, ...) is streamed through a pipe arrangement (0.05 m - 1 m or more in diameter) at atmospheric pressure. This gas is excited in a special arrangement from the outside, without contact, by means of medium-frequency - high-frequency inductive power input to form a plasma or plasma flame. An interesting aspect is that the above-mentioned process gas can be "recycled", i.e. returned to the process as recycling. In fact, nothing "burns" in this process, despite the fact that the heat is generated in a flame.

TRUMPF Hüttinger is currently developing process power supplies and power couplings that will soon replace heat generation using natural gas flames, up to the megawatt range. These are used in a variety of ways, e.g., in metal production or metal recycling, in the chemical and glass-producing industries. 

Resistive heating

Electrical direct or alternating current acts in a heating element (indirectly) or in the process material (workpiece) itself. The electrical resistance causes heating in each case. Depending on the arrangement, a very homogeneous heating pattern with very stable temperature control can be achieved. In this process, TRUMPF Hüttinger mainly uses DC (direct current generators), which can be very well-regulated.

The Future is Electric!

Although there is enormous cost pressure on the investment costs (e-CAPEX) for electric heating systems compared to fossil heating systems, CO2 taxation measures result in a steeper increase in fossil operating costs (f-OPEX). This leads to a shorter contribution margin time (break-even). However, the break-even time horizon depends on the respective F2E process and is between 5 and 10 years.

Dr. Gerd Hintz
Industry Manager Industrial Heating
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