Industrial trials of oil shale ash valorising technology

In April Ragn-Sells Estonia sent 4 tonnes of oil shale ash to a Finnish laboratory, where industrial tests of calcium carbonate production technology now will start. This is the last pre-phase of the scientific research before the design of the plant and the start of the production scheduled for 2025 according to the current timetable.

04 May 2021

The cooperation with Tallinn Technical University and the University of Tartu enables the project to now begin working on the important industrial tests, where the details of calcium carbonate production in large volumes, up to 1 million tonnes, are determined.

- If until today we have improved the technology and thereby produced a few kilos of calcium carbonate from the ashes, now we aim to increase these quantities to hundreds of kilos. It gives us an idea of the specifics of industrial production and prepares us for the final design of the plant. We are very grateful to our partners from the Estonian universities and we look forward to continuing cooperating in the future , says Alar Saluste, project manager Ragn-Sells Estonia.

Will reduce the environmental burden

The research of oil shale ash from the oil shale energy industry focuses on the composition of ashes and the possibilities of reusing the chemical components contained in the ash in different material industries. Such waste utilisation technologies would help to, on the one hand, reduce the burden on the environment of Eastern Estonia and, on the other hand, to extract additional natural resources for Europe as a whole. The goal of the technology development work is to recover more than 1 million tonnes of oil shale ash waste per year using a carbon-neutral process.

RS-OSA Service OÜ was established as a subsidiary of Ragn-Sells AS in Estonia for an oil shale ash valuation research project launched six years ago. Today, a scientific consortium has been established under the management of the company, in which researchers from the University of Tartu and Tallinn Technical University also participate in conducting research. The Archimedes Foundation has also joined as a co-financier of the research.

Ragn-Sells has long experience in developing and launching circular solutions. For example, in May last year, the Ragn-Sells Group announced the start of construction of a new fly ash recovery plant near Stockholm, Sweden. In autumn 2022, the completed plant will be able to clean and convert almost half of the fly ash generated in Sweden into for example industrial salts.