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Iris Ceramica Group and Edison Next Partner for H2 Factory™: Italy’s First Green Hydrogen Ceramic Industry

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Green Hydrogen Revolutionizing the Italian Ceramic Industry

A Milestone Partnership for Decarbonization

“The start of this virtuous path of energy transition with Iris Ceramica Group represents a significant first step towards decarbonizing a crucial sector for the country,” says Giovanni Brianza, CEO of Edison Next. “Iris Ceramica Group represents the excellence of Made in Italy worldwide and has the capacity to face and win this challenge.”

“We are facing a new dawn for the ceramic industry and the entire sector,” states Federica Minozzi, CEO of Iris Ceramica Group. “The underlying principle of our green hydrogen factory is what I call a new industrial humanism, centered around sustainability in all its aspects: environmental, social, and economic.”

Iris Ceramica Group, a global leader in innovative solutions and high-end technical ceramic surfaces, and Edison Next, a subsidiary of Edison Group supporting clients and territories in their decarbonization and ecological transition journey, have announced a partnership to develop H2 Factory™. This cutting-edge production plant, located in Castellarano, Reggio Emilia, will utilize green hydrogen produced through a customized, state-of-the-art system.

This collaboration marks the first concrete and innovative project for decarbonizing the Italian ceramic industry using green hydrogen, a vital initiative for achieving the country’s energy transition goals. The ceramic industry, known as a “Hard to Abate” sector due to its significant energy consumption, plays a decisive role in achieving these objectives, making this project strategically important for the industry.

H2 Factory™, set to begin operations in 2025, will feature a 1 MW green hydrogen production plant powered by renewable energy. The electrolyzer will utilize rainwater collected from storage tanks, promoting responsible water management in line with circular economy principles. Additionally, the project includes the installation of a new 1.2 MW photovoltaic system alongside the existing 2 MW system on the factory’s roof.

The agreement with Edison Next represents a significant milestone for Iris Ceramica Group’s decarbonization journey and opens the possibility of developing additional green hydrogen facilities at other production sites within the Group.

Giovanni Brianza, CEO of Edison Next, emphasizes the importance of this partnership, stating, “The start of this virtuous path of energy transition with Iris Ceramica Group represents a significant first step towards decarbonizing a crucial sector for the country. Iris Ceramica Group represents the excellence of Made in Italy worldwide and has the capacity to face and win this challenge.”

Federica Minozzi, CEO of Iris Ceramica Group, expresses her vision for the future, saying, “We are facing a new dawn for the ceramic industry and the entire sector. The underlying principle of our green hydrogen factory is what I call a new industrial humanism, centered around sustainability in all its aspects: environmental, social, and economic.”

The H2 Factory™ in Castellarano will produce large 4D ceramic slabs, where the fourth dimension represents sustainability. These high-quality ceramic surfaces, with thicknesses of 12 and 20 mm, are particularly suitable for luxury furnishing applications. The factory’s hydrogen-powered kiln will initially operate with a blend of hydrogen and natural gas, gradually increasing the hydrogen percentage. Moreover, a dedicated research and development team is already studying the feasibility of a kiln running solely on hydrogen.

By replacing approximately 500,000 cubic meters of methane gas annually, the expected annual production of 132 tons of green hydrogen will result in a CO2 reduction of approximately 900 tons per year. This significant reduction in carbon emissions underscores the environmental impact of the project.

The partnership between Iris Ceramica Group and Edison Next marks the beginning of an ambitious journey towards decarbonization. The successful completion of the initial feasibility study and the construction of the H2 Factory™, designed to the highest project standards, provide a solid foundation for further developments in green hydrogen production.

Edison Next, with its expertise in energy optimization and decarbonization, will support Iris Ceramica Group in achieving its goal of carbon neutrality in ceramic production by 2030. The circular economy, environmental sustainability, and economic competitiveness are key drivers in this strategic collaboration.

In conclusion, the Iris Ceramica Group and Edison Next partnership for H2 Factory™ represents a groundbreaking milestone in the decarbonization of the ceramic industry. This innovative project showcases the potential of green hydrogen technology and its transformative impact on energy-intensive sectors. As Iris Ceramica Group pioneers this virtuous path towards a sustainable ceramic industry, it aims to inspire other companies to embrace similar initiatives, fostering a better future for all.

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