SSAB launches first emission-free steel powder for Additive Manufacturing

March 27, 2024

March 27, 2024

From left, Jesper Vang, Head of SSAB Powder Technology, and Johnny Sjöström, EVP and Head of SSAB Special Steels, opening SSAB's powder facility in Oxelösund, Sweden (Courtesy SSAB/Jan Lindblad Jr)
From left, Jesper Vang, Head of SSAB Powder Technology, and Johnny Sjöström, EVP and Head of SSAB Special Steels, opening SSAB’s powder facility in Oxelösund, Sweden (Courtesy SSAB/Jan Lindblad Jr)

SSAB, Stockholm, Sweden, has launched what it is calling the world’s first emission-free steel powder for commercial deliveries. The product, made of recycled SSAB Zero steel, is intended to allow manufacturers to additively manufacture steel components at a lower environmental impact.

“This is a game-changer in the world of 3D-printed steel. SSAB has already proven it’s possible to produce steel without carbon dioxide emissions. Now we’re merging emission-free steel with powder technology to enable sustainable 3D-printed design with unlimited imagination,” said Johnny Sjöström, EVP and Head of SSAB Special Steels.

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The production of steel is a large source of CO2 emissions for the Additive Manufacturing of steel products, states SSAB. By pulverising SSAB’s emission-free steel with exclusively fossil-free energy sources, the carbon dioxide emissions from the steelmaking are said to be reduced to virtually zero.

Last year, SSAB launched its first conventional steel powder – SSAB AM Engineering – and has since expanded the portfolio with SSAB AM Tough Zero. SSAB will also be able to offer its fossil-free steel, based on HYBRIT technology, as a powder in limited volumes.

In 2020, SSAB invested in a steel powder production facility in Oxelösund to produce premium advanced high-strength steel powder for Additive Manufacturing, as a complement to SSAB’s regular steel offering.

“3D printing high-strength steel components will help reduce the amount of raw material used, and cut the weight and increase functionality of the final product. This is especially important for industries, such as automotives or heavy machinery, that are trying to save weight, increase performance, and reduce their CO2 footprint,” added Jesper Vang, Head of SSAB Powder Technology.

In 2022, Triwa produced a watch, the first consumer product made with SSAB’s fossil-free steel powder (Courtesy SSAB)
In 2022, Triwa produced a watch, the first consumer product made with SSAB’s fossil-free steel powder (Courtesy SSAB)

SSAB has already provided prototype fossil-free steel powder to selected customers. In 2023, HT Laser additively manufactured a component for a forest machine; mining company Epiroc debuted a prototype hydraulic block for a rock drill in conventional steel powder and said it was exploring the possibility of using fossil-free powder. In 2022, Triwa produced a watch, said to be the first consumer product made with fossil-free steel powder.

About SSAB Zero and SSAB Fossil-freeTM

SSAB Zero is steel made from recycled scrap using fossil-free energy sources, resulting in zero emissions from the steelmaking process. SSAB Zero was launched at a commercial scale in 2023.

SSAB Fossil-free steel is produced using the HYBRIT-technology, developed by SSAB with mining company LKAB and energy company Vattenfall. Instead of using coal to remove the oxygen from the iron ore, the HYBRIT-technology uses hydrogen gas, produced with fossil-free energy, to make sponge iron for steel production. The carbon dioxide emissions are eliminated, and instead the by-product is water.

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March 27, 2024

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