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ARPA-E launches $35M ROSIE program to decarbonize domestic iron and steel production

The US Department of Energy (DOE) Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) announced up to $35 million in funding (DE-FOA-0003117) to support a new program to enable zero-process-emission ironmaking and ultra-low life cycle emissions steelmaking.

The iron and steel industry accounts for around 7% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and 11% of global CO2 emissions and, by 2050, global iron and steel demand is projected to rise as much as 40%. Current blast furnace technologies—responsible for approximately 70% of global iron and steel GHG emissions—require carbon, which makes this sector particularly difficult to decarbonize.

The Revolutionizing Ore to Steel to Impact Emissions (ROSIE) program—managed by the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E)—seeks to revolutionize not just the iron or steelmaking process, but the entire supply chain from ore to final steel production.

ROSIE seeks to fund the development and demonstration of novel technologies that produce iron-based products from iron-containing ores and alternative feedstocks without process emissions in the ironmaking step. Technologies funded through ROSIE must have the potential to achieve milestones including:

  • Cost parity with existing iron or steel products;

  • Zero GHG emissions specifically from the ironmaking process;

  • Ultra-low lifecycle GHG emissions emitted per tonne of iron or steel product;

  • Process and product scalability; and

  • Materials properties consistent with relevant current commercial products.

The program will have two categories: A and B. Projects in Category A must describe a novel ironmaking process to produce an iron product. Projects in Category B must describe a novel ironmaking process that ultimately produces a specific steel product. All projects must account for the impact a given technology will have on supply chain, production of a final steel product, and overall emissions.


The relevant unit operations and categories for submission associated with the ROSIE Program. Source: ARPA-E

If successful, novel ironmaking technologies meeting the metrics set forth by ROSIE will enable a reduction of US emissions by more than 65 metric tonnes CO2 emitted annually (approximately 1% of US emissions) and global emissions by more than 2.9 gigatonnes annually (5.5% of global emissions).


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