Latest ACerS Bulletin Features Electric Melting Article

The May 2024 edition of the ACerS Bulletin includes, “Empowering Sustainability: The US glass industry charged to break barriers for a greener future.” The article, by Scott Cooper, GMIC Past President and Technical Director USA for CelSian; and Kerry Ward, GMIC Executive Director, explores cutting-edge advancements in electric melting and how new technology can revolutionize glass manufacturing and increase energy efficiency.

DOE Announces Glass Decarbonization Workshop

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Industrial Efficiency & Decarbonization Office (IEDO) is inviting stakeholders from across the glass manufacturing supply chain (e.g., glass manufacturers, equipment manufacturers, raw material providers, etc.) to participate in a workshop on glass decarbonization on May 16th and 17th, 2024 at the Hyatt Pittsburgh International Airport hotel in Pittsburgh, PA.

The goal of the workshop is to identify key challenges, priorities, and opportunities for decarbonization of the glass manufacturing sector. Emphasis will be placed on technical challenges, as well as applied research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) opportunities at low to mid technology readiness levels (TRLs). During the workshop, IEDO leadership will provide an overview of the office and share the vision, strategy, and available resources to support innovations to improve energy efficiency and reduce the carbon footprint across U.S. manufacturing operations. Through facilitated discussion, participants will help inform IEDO’s priorities and future plans in supporting decarbonization of the glass manufacturing sector. 

This event is targeting participation from stakeholders with technical and/or practical expertise related to glass manufacturing, decarbonization technologies, and/or applied RD&D. The event has limited capacity and IEDO is requesting that no more than two representatives from each organization participate.

Registration details and in additional information on the agenda can be found here:

Three GMIC Members Receive DOE Grants

Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) announced up to $6 billion in funding to decarbonize energy-intensive industries. Proposals from GMIC members Gallo Glass, Libbey Glass, and O-I Glass were among 33 projects selected for award negotiation. Multiple industries were represented in the announcement, including chemicals and refining, concrete, iron and steel, and aluminum and metals. The funding represents the largest investment in industrial decarbonization in U.S. history.

The DOE announcement detailed the three glass projects:

Gallo Glass, Hybrid Electric Glass Furnace Project: to install a demonstration hybrid electric furnace to reduce natural gas use by 70% and increase recycled content by 30% in its glass bottle production process. Gallo will leverage renewable energy provided by the local utility and anticipates selling low-carbon glass bottles as a premium option, contributing to the decarbonization of a large portion of glass for California’s wine and spirits industry.    

Libbey Glass, Flexible Fuel Electric Hybrid Glass Furnace Demonstration Project: to replace four regenerative furnaces with two larger hybrid electric furnaces to reduce an estimated 60% of carbon dioxide emissions at Libbey’s facility in Toledo, Ohio. The hybrid furnaces combine the benefits of oxygen fuel with electric melting, replacing up to 80% of the melting energy with renewable-sourced electricity. Because glass tableware have some of the highest glass product standards, this project will demonstrate the viability of electrification and alternative fuel use for the entire glass industry.  

O-I Glass, Glass Furnace Decarbonization Technology Project: to rebuild four furnaces across three of its facilities in California, Ohio, and Virginia to reduce scope one carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 48,000 metric tons per year, an average of 40% reduction of scope one emissions across the four furnaces and their corresponding production lines. O-I plans to combine five cutting-edge furnace technologies on each furnace, demonstrating the functionality of combining multiple technologies across different glass colors and container types.

Funding for the program is provided primarily through the Inflation Reduction Act, as well as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

GMIC to Receive Funding to Help Decarbonize America’s Industrial Sector

The Glass Manufacturing Industry Council (GMIC) is pleased to announce that it has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy to receive $3 million in funding to research advanced electric melting in glass manufacturing. The research is intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help move the nation toward a net-zero economy.

The GMIC project was one of 49 selected, totaling $171 million in federal funding. Marie Kistler, GMIC President and Market Manager in Air Products’ Americas Strategic Marketing and Development organizaton, said “The submission and selection of the GMIC-led application for DOE funding is a great step forward for the industry. The efforts of GMIC members and partners have led to increased recognition of the glass industry’s important role in decarbonizing America’s industrial sector and the project results will benefit glass producers across multiple sectors.”

Partners on the project team are the Pacific Northwest National Lab (PNNL) in Richland, Washington; RoMan Manufacturing in Wyoming, Michigan; Toledo Engineering Company (TECO), and CelSian, both in Toledo, Ohio. With two recipients based in Northwest Ohio, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-09) said, “As a region with a rich history in glass production, it is encouraging to see this $3 million federal award from the Department of Energy come back to the Glass City and Northwest Ohio. This partnership between the Glass Manufacturing Industry Council and its partners and the Department of Energy is a major step forward for glass production that moves us toward further decarbonization and a sustainable future. Glass and derivative industries remain vital for Northwest Ohio. I am pleased to assist in efforts to help keep our region competitive and at the forefront of glass manufacturing for generations to come.”

The project team will bring together extensive expertise in glass manufacturing, electric melting, lab-scale experimentation, computer modeling, and engineering solutions. Scott Cooper, Technical Director USA of CelSian, and principal investigator on the project, said “Electric melting has been successfully used at a commercial scale to make high-quality, industrial glass. However, some challenges have prevented its widespread adoption in higher-volume applications like container and flat glass production. Our project aims to address these challenges, advance electric melting technology for sustainable glass production, and provide viable options for the glass industry’s journey toward a lower-carbon future.”

Results of the anticipated three-year project will be shared in publications, community outreach efforts, and at the annual Glass Problems Conference, organized by GMIC.

For more information about the project partners, please visit their respective websites.

GMIC Welcomes New President

Marie D. Kistler

Marie Kistler, Market Manager in Air Products’ Americas Strategic Marketing and Development organization, started her term as GMIC President on January 1. Marie’s focus is on market dynamics and solutions for energy-intensive industries, such as Glass and Steel, where industrial gas products and technologies play a significant role in the energy transition. She especially enjoys collaborating with trade associations and their manufacturing and supplier members to advance the industry and solve common problems.

Looking ahead to 2024, Marie said, “I am honored to serve as GMIC President this year and I look forward to working together with the dedicated and dynamic team of GMIC staff and member representatives. I am excited to build on the framework and goals established in our new Strategic Plan aimed at increasing member value and amplifying the voice of the glass industry through advocacy, education, and research.”

Marie has a degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and has been with Air Products for over 35 years, including roles in Materials Engineering, Contract Research and Applied R&D.

Completing this year’s GMIC Executive Committee are Vice President Stanley F. Rutkowski, RoMan Manufacturing; Treasurer Benjamin Prothman, Acuity Brands; and Scott Cooper, CelSian Glass.

New Video Celebrates International Year of Glass

A new video, “The Age of Glass,” showcases activities from around the world that were developed in support of the 2022 United Nations International Year of Glass. The video is available at YouTube and includes events from last December’s Debriefing Session in New York at the UN Headquarters, which GMIC supported. Take a look back at this incredible year of glass events.

Hydrogen Hubs Announced

The Biden Administration announced the selection of seven regional clean hydrogen hubs that will receive $7 billion in funding as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The hubs are expected to accelerate the domestic market for low-cost, clean hydrogen, providing a future source of clean energy for U.S. glass production. In a Glass International report about the announcement, GMIC President Scott Cooper commented on the opportunity to use hydrogen as part of the glass industry’s decarbonization goals. See the complete story here.

Image Courtesy of Verescence

GMIC President Featured in Glass Worldwide Interview

An interview with Scott Cooper, Technical Director for CelSian USA, appears in the current issue of Glass Worldwide, the preferred journal of GMIC.

Cooper discusses his new role at CelSian, his second term as GMIC president, and planning for the association’s future within a changing glass industry.

Read the interview here or in the Sept/Oct 2023 issue of Glass Worldwide.

Scott Cooper/CelSian