Industrial thermoprocessing plants in Europe are still based to a large extent on fossil energy sources. Many furnaces are designed for a lifetime of about 30 years and more. The timely conversion to emission-free and renewable energy sources according to the roadmap of the EU Green Deal until 2050 requires not only adapted processes on the conventional plants, but above all the development and commissioning of new thermoprocesses and furnaces. Innovations in the field of measurement technology, the processing of large amounts of data, modelling and simulation (e.g. AI methods) are to be combined and used as examples to significantly shorten the necessary process and plant development.
Based on innovative approaches of process simulation, material modelling and data processing, a methodology is to be developed with which thermal processing plants and the manufacturing processes planned at the plants can be planned virtually at the computer ("digital twin") in such a precise way that a direct implementation in large-scale plants - without intermediate steps in laboratory, pilot plant and pilot scale - is subsequently possible. Energy-intensive thermal processes for bulk materials are used as an application example.