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  Institute for Reactor Safety and Reactor Technology (Univ.-Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Hans-Josef Allelein)

Collaborative Research Centre 525:
Resource-Orientated Analysis of Metallic Raw Material Flows
Sub-Program 7 - Energy Supply

Overall Project Aim:

The aim of the Collaborative Research Centre 525 is to develop a tool for a resource-saving process stream of metallic raw material. In the first project phase, the mass flow of aluminium, from the exploration and extraction of bauxite, the smelting and processing to the uses, waste disposal and recycling, should be exemplarily shown from ecological and economical points of view. Energetic, transport-technical, ecological and socio-economic viewpoints of this process chain are covered by the cross section projects and are summarised within the scope of a system analysis. Instancing scenarios, the current situation can be used to make predictions of future developments. By the same method, potential changes of technologies, production structures, markets, foreign trade relations and common interest groups are looked at, as well as the possibilities of the internalisation of external effects, in order to arrive at a lasting development. The results from the Collaborative Research Centre finally serve as a basis for discussion and also as a decision-aid for a resource-orientated material flow management.

Structure of the Collaborative Research Centre in Sub-Programs (SP):

Within Collaborative Research Centre 525 the co-operation is called upon from engineers, natural scientists and economists from nine institutes within the University of Technology, Aachen (RWTH) and the Jülich Research Centre (FZ).

structure of SFB

The Aim of Sub-Program 7 "Energy Supply":

The Sub-Program "Energy Supply", being conducted by the Reactor Safety and Technology department, entails the development of a comprehensive model representing the energy supply structure of all manufacturing, transport, recycling and waste disposal processes in the aluminium processing cycle. Proceeding from the reserve of the primary energy carriers, within the scope of constructing balances, the material and energy inputs and outputs as well as costs, labour intensity, extraction and transformation processes right through to the final energy use of the consumer (e.g. in the process chain of the metal production) are captured for it. The relevant data are entered into a database and then summarized. Through the use of balance-assessment software applied to the complex system, it becomes possible to portray the individual processes of the metal process chain and the energy supply chain in a modular form. The final energy consumptions, registered in the metal production process chain, are investigated with the help of the already created energy model in view of the primary energy, energy resource usage (e.g. coal or uranium ore), economic (e.g. electricity production costs) and ecological effects (e.g. CO2-emissions) and then they can be assigned to the end product of the metal production process (e.g. 1t aluminium).

Line of action:

Characteristics and capacity of the energy model:

In the scope of a total view, the following code numbers of the energy supply for metal production, processing and disposal processes can be determined with the help of the energy model:

Aim of the partial project 7 "Energy Supply":

The energy model is to determine the parameters mentioned above for different variants of energy supply and metal process chain. For this, the following variations for energy supply are to be considered:

Technological variants and developments are to be considered and analysed on a final energy basis in metal production processes as well. Therefore the connection between resources, ecology, economy and technology during energy supply can be represented. It also becomes possible to portray the influence (in process chains of energy supply as well as in modules of metal process chains) on resource consumption, energy-dependent ecological and economical aspects. This leads to product specific parameters, e.g. pollutant emissions or resource consumption per ton final product (aluminium), for example kgCO2/tAl, kgUran/tAl.

Thus, the energy model serves to develop, by means of scenarios, strategies to design the energy supply of processes like metal production, processing and disposal, oriented according to resources.