CEMEX and Synhelion Achieve Breakthrough in Cement Production Using Solar Power | News

MONTERREY, Mexico & LUGANO, Switzerland–(BUSINESS WIRE)–February 2, 2022–

CEMEX, SAB de CV (“CEMEX”) and Synhelion today announced the successful production of the world’s first solar clinker, the key component of cement, an important step towards the development of fully solar cement plants.

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Davide Zampini, CEMEX Head of Global R&D owns the world’s first solar clinker. Source: CEMEX

Clinker is produced by fusing limestone, clay and other materials in a rotary kiln at temperatures around 1500°C. Fossil fuels are typically used to heat the kiln and are responsible for around 40% of the direct CO 2 emissions from the process. Replacing fossil fuels entirely with solar power is a game-changer in industry’s efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

“The production of the first solar clinker is an exciting step for this processing technology. This is proof of our commitment to deliver tangible results through innovation to achieve our goal of providing only CO2-free concrete by 2050,” said Fernando A. Gonzalez, CEO of CEMEX. “CEMEX is building a better future, and that future must be sustainable.”

Synhelion and CEMEX R&D teams have set up a batch production pilot unit to produce clinker from concentrated solar radiation by connecting the clinker production process with the Synhelion solar receiver. The pilot was installed in IMDEA Energy’s ultra-high concentration solar tower, located in Spain. Synhelion’s solar receiver delivers record temperatures exceeding 1,500°C. The solar receiver heats a gaseous heat transfer medium and thus supplies the process heat required for the production of clinker.

“Our technology converts concentrated sunlight into the hottest existing solar process heat – over 1500°C – on the market,” said Dr. Gianluca Ambrosetti, CEO and co-founder of Synhelion. “We are proud to demonstrate with CEMEX a specific industrially relevant application of our fully renewable high temperature solar heat.”

The pilot is the first successful calcination and, more importantly, the first successful clinkerization ever performed using only solar energy. The clinker was used to produce cement and was then processed to produce concrete. In the next phase of their joint research and development project, CEMEX and Synhelion aim to produce solar clinker in larger quantities as they work on an industrial-scale pilot project at a cement plant.

This initiative is part of CEMEX’s Future in Action program, which focuses on reducing the carbon footprint of its operations and products to deliver net-zero CO2 concrete globally by 2050. Central to this strategy is CEMEX Ventures and its R&D center in Switzerland. Through them, CEMEX discovers and invests in the companies they believe will provide the proven and scalable technologies to achieve carbon neutrality.

About Synhelion

Synhelion is a global pioneer in the field of sustainable solar fuels. The clean energy company spun off from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH Zurich) in 2016 to decarbonize transport. Solar fuels can replace all types of fossil fuels as they are economically viable and fully compatible with existing global infrastructure. Synhelion’s unique technology converts concentrated solar heat into the hottest process heat on the market, enabling an unprecedented number of industrial processes such as fuel production and cement manufacturing to be driven with solar heat. The company already works with international partners such as the Lufthansa Group, Wood, Eni, CEMEX and Zurich Airport. For more information, please visit: www.synhelion.com.


CEMEX (NYSE: CX) is a global building materials company building a better future through sustainable products and solutions. CEMEX is committed to achieving carbon neutrality through constant innovation and cutting-edge research and development. CEMEX is at the forefront of the circular economy in the construction value chain and is at the forefront of ways to increase the use of waste and residues as raw materials and alternative fuels in its operations through the use of new technologies. CEMEX provides cement, ready-mix concrete, aggregates and urbanization solutions to growing markets around the world, powered by a multinational workforce focused on delivering a superior customer experience, made possible by digital technologies. For more information, please visit: www.cemex.com.

CEMEX assumes no obligation to update or correct the information contained in this press release. This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the United States federal securities laws. CEMEX intends that these forward-looking statements be covered by the forward-looking statement safe harbor provisions of the United States federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements reflect CEMEX’s current expectations and projections regarding future events based on CEMEX’s knowledge of current facts and circumstances and assumptions regarding future events, as well as CEMEX’s current plans based on such facts and circumstances. . These statements necessarily involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from CEMEX’s expectations. The content of this press release is for informational purposes only and you should not construe this information or other material as legal, tax, investment, financial or other advice. CEMEX is not responsible for the content of any third-party website or webpage referenced or accessible through this press release.

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CONTACT: Media Relations


Jorge Perez

+52 (81) 8259-6666

jorgeluis.perez@cemex.comMedia contact


Carmen Murier

+41 79 619 52 11





Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

PUBLISHED: 02/02/2022 17:30/DISC: 02/02/2022 17:31


Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

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