Umicore and Prayon launch pioneering environmental project

The Umicore site in Olen and the Prayon site in Puurs are joining forces on a pioneering environmental project. Starting in January 2015, Prayon will use salt flows from Umicore in its production process. In this way, Umicore can cut down on the salts in its wastewater, driving these even further below the levels required by law and providing Prayon with a substitute for some of its raw materials.

A joint solution for differing challenges

Both Umicore in Olen and Prayon in Puurs were seeking solutions for differing challenges. Umicore wanted to cut down on the salts present in its wastewater coming from various production processes. Prayon was looking for an alternative raw material to salt and fluorosilic acid for its production of sodium fluosilicate, a substance that is used for applications such as glass making.

Activities starting in January 2015

The challenges facing the companies were complementary. Following investments by both parties, Prayon will be able to use Umicore's salt flows for the production of sodium fluosilicate.

Starting in January 2015, tanker trucks will ferry salt flows from the Umicore site to Prayon every working day. A preliminary study which examined this transport and its environmental impact found that the new process would lead to lower overall CO2 emissions compared to before.

Prayon, Umicore, the environment…: everyone is a winner

In this pioneering partnership between Prayon and Umicore everyone is a winner: Prayon will have an alternative raw material available that is less expensive and more environmentally friendly, while Umicore can cut down on the salts in its wastewater, reducing them even further below the levels required by law and also enhancing the flexibility of its production. Meanwhile, the environment will benefit through lower levels of salt flows and a reduction in overall CO2 emissions.

Jan Vliegen (Umicore Olen Site Manager): “I am absolutely delighted with this partnership as recycling is a key part of Umicore Olen's philosophy. It shows that not only is our expertise in demand, but it is also bearing real fruit.”

 Bart Wouters (Prayon Puurs Site Manager): “The fact that Umicore and Prayon found each other to meet a challenge they were facing shows that our respective companies are also putting sustainable development into practice and are looking beyond internal opportunities to do this.”

For more information, contact:

Dominique Maréchal – Prayon Communications Manager 
Tel. (office): +32 42 739240; (mobile) +32 476 860258

Raf Hendrickx - Umicore Olen Communications Manager
Tel. (office): +32 14 245241: (mobile) +32 477 974409