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March 06, 2015

The “magic” of urea and ammonia

In 2014, Yara strengthened its position within emission reduction technology by acquiring H+H Umwelt- und Industrietechnik, who uses urea and ammonia to transform dirty exhaust gas into clean air.

Yara Environmental Technologies, formerly H+H Umwelt- und Industrietechnik GmbH, was founded in Hargesheim, Germany in 1998, and is today a leading provider in the field of environmental technologies. The company specialized in exhaust gas treatment systems for the reduction of NOx emissions from ships and industrial plants.

The acquisition fits in well with Yara's strategy of seeking business opportunities through tackling major global challenges - in this case, air pollution. Yara Environmental Technologies’ systems reduce harmful NOx emissions by up to 99%, helping preserve nature and life. This is how it works:

From harmful to harmless

The Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) process for ships can be broken down to 3 steps:

  1. Injection of a urea solution
  2. Conversion of urea into ammonia
  3. NOx reacts with ammonia

And voilà:NOx has been converted into nitrogen and water. It might look like magic – but it is, in fact, all about chemistry.

The cleaning processNOx emissions are created when burning fossil fuels. They cause a variety of health issues from irritation of eyes and nose to shortness of breath to lung cancer. They also significantly increase the risk of asthma. They are a source of acid rain, causing harm to the environment.

Ships are heavy emitters of NOx gases, polluting coastal areas. Increasingly stricter environmental regulations for NOx reduction standards are being imposed for vessels ranging from cruise ships to and oil tankers. Legislation is also becoming stricter for stationary industrial plants.

“Our mission is to provide an active contribution to safeguarding the environment,” says Michael Heck, Managing Director at Yara Environmental Technologies. “Thanks to the long experience of our engineers and our deep knowledge about SCR catalysts, Yara Environmental Technologies provides specific and reliable solutions to reduce NOx emissions. ”

Yara Environmental Technologies’ systems help ship owners and industrial plant managers around the world achieve their environmental targets in a reliable and cost-effective manner. Yara Environmental Technologies has more than 1,200 SCR units installed on vessels and factories worldwide.

Stricter emissions regulation will drive this market. Yara Environmental Technologies is ahead of the curve, allowing its customers today to fulfill the requirements of tomorrow.

Also check out the other articles in our series of articles focusing on Yara’s emissions control technology: E2A: Yara fights air pollution, E2A: Yara fights emissions at sea, Fighting emissions – Yara has big plans!, Cutting air pollution from ships, A billion dollar market.

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