NGK has installed a CO2 capture system next to its ceramic products plant in the headquarters area, and from September, has begun a demonstration to capture CO2 from a portion of the exhaust gas from the firing kiln. The system was made by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and captures about 0.1 tons of CO2 per day. In December 2024, NGK plans to install system made by IHI Corporation to realize “methanation,” a process that reacts captured CO2 and hydrogen to produce methane, the main component of city gas, and to demonstrate CO2 recycling by capturing and reusing CO2 emitted in the firing process.
One approach to achieve carbon neutrality is CCUS, or the capture, utilization, and storage of emitted CO2, but the high cost makes it a challenge to implement. In addition, the exhaust gas from ceramics firing kilns tends to be more expensive than that from thermal power stations, where many CO2 capture demonstrations have been conducted, as the CO2 concentration is lower, and capture is less efficient. By starting CCU demonstrations as early as possible using technologies that are already in practical use, NGK aims to establish system specifications and operating conditions suitable for its firing kilns and implement energy management, such as utilizing unused low-temperature waste heat, to apply efficient CCUS at a reasonable cost.
Targeting net zero
In the NGK Group Environmental Vision, formulated in April 2021, the NGK Group has set the target of achieving net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. The Group has developed its Carbon Neutrality Strategic Roadmap to realize this target, and is promoting technological innovations such as CCUS to accelerate the achievement of net zero. In addition to this demonstration, it has begun the development of CCUS-related products such as monolithic reactors for synfuel. To achieve net zero CO2 emissions, NGK will continue to promote the development of technologies that utilize clean energy in the production of ceramics and will contribute to the realization of a carbon-neutral society.