Background and aims of the project
The aim of FlashPhos is to demonstrate a thermochemical process to sustainably produce high-quality white phosphorus at a large scale by using sewage sludge as input material. Currently, the European Union is almost completely dependent on white phosphorus imports from Kazakhstan, Vietnam and China. Yet, there are enough phosphorus reserves in Europe veiled in sewage sludge to cover the EU’s whole demand on white phosphorus plus up to 25 % of the phosphate consumed in the EU for other applications. These raw materials have strategic applications for the European chemical, metal, and cement industry.
In addition to the elemental white phosphorus as a product of the process, slags are produced as a by-product. These have hydraulic binder properties and show potential as a substitute for clinker in certain cement types. It is therefore the task of the VDZ to examine and evaluate the slags for cement-technical properties. In addition, the availability of further industrial waste products must be evaluated, which can be used as alternative additives with regard to their energetic benefit and their influence on the cementitious properties of the slags in the FlashPhos process. In terms of process technology, VDZ is centrally involved in optimising the integration of the FlashPhos process in a cement plant. The task here is to determine the optimal interfaces between the clinker burning process and the FlashPhos process, so that the energy benefit for the FlashPhos process is maximised through integration in a cement plant and the negative effects on the clinker burning process are kept as low as possible.