thyssenkrupp's Breakthrough in Phosphogypsum Recycling

thyssenkrupp Uhde
thyssenkrupp UhdeImage Source: thyssenkrupp Uhde


thyssenkrupp Uhde, Ma’aden, and Metso join forces in a groundbreaking project for a low-emission calcination plant in Saudi Arabia. The plant aims to recycle phosphogypsum, a by-product of phosphoric acid production, and capture CO2 emissions. This collaboration aligns with Saudi Arabia's Green Initiative and Vision 2030. The innovative process not only transforms phosphogypsum into useful resources but also pioneers a circular economy in the phosphate industry, contributing to global sustainability goals.


In a remarkable stride towards environmental sustainability, thyssenkrupp Uhde has inked a master agreement with Ma’aden and Metso to pioneer a groundbreaking calcination plant for phosphogypsum processing. The proposed plant, situated at Ma’aden’s Ras al Khair site in Saudi Arabia, is set to revolutionize the treatment of phosphogypsum, a by-product of vital phosphoric acid production.

The joint venture, supported by thyssenkrupp Polysius and Metso Outotec, marks a significant leap in recycling phosphogypsum and simultaneously capturing CO2 emissions. The ambitious project aligns with Saudi Arabia's Green Initiative and Vision 2030, aiming to reduce carbon emissions and repurpose phosphogypsum into a valuable resource.

Hassan Al-Ali, Executive Vice President at Ma’aden Phosphate, expresses anticipation, stating, "With this ambitious project, we will contribute significantly to the Saudi Green Initiative and create lasting impact in line with our Kingdom’s Vision 2030."

Lucretia Löscher, COO of thyssenkrupp Uhde, acknowledges the honor of being chosen for this innovative venture, emphasizing the transformative impact on the phosphate industry. The project signifies a crucial milestone in thyssenkrupp Uhde's commitment to enabling the green transformation of its customers.

Phosphogypsum, a by-product of phosphoric acid production, poses challenges due to impurities and limited direct use. The innovative treatment process proposed by thyssenkrupp Uhde brings forth a triple benefit. Firstly, it converts phosphogypsum into quicklime (calcium oxide, CaO) through a low-emission calcination process. By utilizing alternative fuels like hydrogen or sulfur, the process minimizes CO2 emissions, contributing to environmental sustainability. thyssenkrupp Polysius, known for its expertise in the cement and lime industry, provides additional know-how for this low-emission process.

Secondly, the process enables the recovery of sulfuric acid, which can be recycled for phosphoric acid production. This step promotes a closed-loop system, minimizing waste and optimizing resource utilization.

Thirdly, the quicklime generated in the process binds CO2 through carbonization, producing limestone. This end product finds applications in the construction industry or cement production, showcasing a holistic approach to waste reduction and sustainable material utilization.


The collaboration between thyssenkrupp Uhde, Ma’aden, and Metso represents a groundbreaking move towards sustainable phosphogypsum recycling and CO2 capture. This project not only aligns with global sustainability goals but also exemplifies the transformative impact of circular economy practices in the phosphate industry. By repurposing waste into valuable resources, the initiative contributes to a greener, more sustainable future.

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