Flexible heating with hydrogen for continuous lines.

FlexHeat2Anneal is a funded research project investigating the flexible use of hydrogen as a fuel for continuous process lines and galvanizing lines.

Project partner

IOB, RWTH Aachen University
thyssenkrupp Rasselstein GmbH
WS Wärmeprozesstechnik GmbH

The scope of this project is the investigation of the flexible use of hydrogen as fuel in continuously operated annealing lines and similar steel strip furnaces, aiming at the reduction of CO2 emissions. The use of hydrogen is being tested in existing radiant tube systems in the research lab. In parallel, modern radiant tube systems using fuel-flexible and energy-efficient FLOX® burners in Double-P-tubes with minimal NOx emissions are being developed and demonstrated. Hydrogen use is supposed to be possible within a 0-100% range without manual adjustment of the overall furnace or changes to the radiant tube system. Despite changes in the fuel supply, the goal is to maintain high stability of the process as well as energy-effiency and low-emission combustion.
The project will support decarbonisation efforts in steel processing as well as the acceptance of hydrogen as future fuel in the industry. The solutions developed within the project will not only apply to new installations but aim at retrofit solutions as well in order to allow for quick market diffusion. Demonstration will take place in a continuous annealing line for steel strip. The results will show the effects of switching from natural gas to hydrogen and will give a well founded estimate for a realistic potential of carbon reduction due to the switch in fuel.

Research field of thermal process technology

The new research field of thermal process technology is dedicated to the goal of defossilizing high-temperature processes above 1,000 °C. While some processes are flexible enough to be heated with renewable electricity, climate-neutral fuels will be necessary for many applications in the future.


REGEMAT® 250: Strong increase in sales figures

Continuous and recently even particularly strong increases in sales figures prove that the REGEMAT® 250 is the new gold standard for modern strip galvanizing lines. Customers are impressed by the lowest NOx values with maximum efficiency as well as its future viability thanks to its outstanding suitability for operation with hydrogen.


Start of 2024: Innovation & investment

The WS Group is looking forward to an exciting and successful year 2024. We are expecting the completion and commissioning of several pioneering investments. On the product side, our customers can also look forward to various innovations and further developments that will make a decisive contribution to their success in achieving true sustainability. 


Thermprocess 2023

Highly efficient, flexible and with the lowest emissions in the industry. These are the burner products that WS will present to the trade public at Thermprocess 2023.

Once again, WS sets the tone when it comes to modern gas heating: fuel-flexible, efficient and low-emission across the entire product range.