RHI Magnesita and Australian cleantech MCi Carbon enter long-term strategic cooperation to decarbonise refractories

14. February 2023

RHI Magnesita’s has completed a multi-million-dollar investment in the award-winning cleantech and is expected to significantly advance MCi’s Carbon utilisation technology (CCU), underlining the company’s role as sustainability frontrunner of the refractory industry.

Austria/Australia (OTS): RHI Magnesita today signed a long-term strategic cooperation agreement with the Australian cleantech MCi Carbon (“MCi”). The global market leader is investing several millions into research and development for innovative technologies abating carbon emissions to achieve its goal of becoming a CO2 neutral business.

“This partnership could become a breakthrough towards decarbonising the industry. It fits seamlessly with RHI Magnesita’s ambitious sustainability strategy,” says CEO Stefan Borgas. “We still have a long way to go but our early-stage investment and the clear intention of a long-term collaboration make this day so memorable. Together with the like-minded team from MCi we will pave the way for a greener industry.”

RHI Magnesita is the world’s leading manufacturer of refractory materials, which are used in all high-temperature industrial processes. As market leader, RHI Magnesita has a responsibility to drive sustainability. Striving to reduce CO2 emissions is therefore one of the company’s top priorities. A significant share of the company’s carbon emissions is released during mineral processing. Decarbonising the company therefore requires unprecedented innovation and new technologies.

MCi’s technology presents a safe and profitable means of storing CO2 permanently. The chemical process, called mineral carbonation, creates a range of low-carbon embodied materials, including calcium and magnesium carbonate by carbonating minerals in by-products of industrial processes. For this innovative climate solution, MCi has recently been awarded #1 Global Cleantech Pitch at COP26 in Glasgow.

RHI Magnesita is convinced of the potential of mineralisation to achieve a significant CO2 reduction within its Scope1 emissions. To date, both companies have worked together on CO2 mitigation studies, mineral carbonisation feedstock assessments and techno-economic analyses at RHI Magnesita’s worldwide sites. The investment now results from the cleantech’s high industrial research maturity as well as its technology’s exceptional suitability for use in the refractories industry and within the group itself.

“MCi and RHI Magnesita have formed a value-driven collaboration to accelerate the scaling of MCi’s “Circular Carbon Platform,” says MCi co-founder and CEO Marcus Dawe. “After a year of successful pilot studies, RHI Magnesita will be MCi’s first commercial customer and a shareholder, helping advance the technology and decarbonise the global refractories industry. This is a positive step towards hard-to-abate emission reductions and a circular economy.”

In a next step, the companies’ joint efforts will focus on industrial scale-up, expected to kick-off in 2024 with the setup of a demonstration plant by MCi in Newcastle, Australia, supported by the Australian government and in alignment with the goals of Mission Innovation’s Net Zero Industries initiative, co-led by Austria and Australia.