Electra raised $85 million to produce low-temperature iron (LTI) from commercial and low-grade ores using zero-carbon intermittent electricity. The company will build a green-iron refining pilot plant in 2023 in Boulder, Colo.
The company created a process to electrochemically refine iron ore into pure iron at 140°F (60°C) using renewable electricity and then convert the iron to steel using the existing infrastructure of electricity-powered arc furnaces. By comparison, 69% of steel today is made at approximately 2912°F (1600°C) using coal, emitting about 2 tons of carbon dioxide for every ton of steel produced.
The process emits zero carbon dioxide emissions and carries zero green premium, meaning it will cost the same or less than existing production methods powered by fossil fuels.