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A double cold reduction steel mill with Baosteel and Primetals logos.

Double cold reduction mill supplied by Primetals Technologies started-up at Baosteel in Shanghai

At the Shanghai works of Chinese steel producer Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd. (Baosteel), a newly-built double cold reduction (DCR) mill supplied by Primetals Technologies commenced operation. The DCR mill is designed to process 205,000 metric tons of cold strip per year and is part of Baosteel´s Tinplate Product Structure Optimization Project. It may be run in both reduction/temper and temper mode. The processed strip will be used for the production of beverage can, metal caps, electrical components, for example. Primetals Technologies had received the order in December 2016.

Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd. is part of the newly formed China Baowu Steel Group Corp Ltd, with an annual production of approximately 65.4 million metric tons (2017) the second largest steel producer in the world. Baosteel produces high-quality products for both the domestic and the world markets. 

(Read more about Baosteel on World Steel News)

The DCR mill supplied by Primetals Technologies has an annual production capacity of 205,000 metric tons at a maximum line speed of 1,500 m/min. It consists of a two-stand UCM and is designed to perform double-cold reduction as well as one-stand temper rolling.

In the DCR process, the annealed strip, after reduction in a tandem cold mill, is reduce rolled on the No. 1 stand and temper rolled on the No. 2 stand. This process imparts the strip with its prescribed mechanical strength. In stand No. 1, work rolls with two different diameters can be used.In one-stand temper rolling, the strip is temper rolled in stand 2 to the prescribed elongation ratios to obtain the desired mechanical characteristics.

The DCR mill processes strip produced by a PLTCM. Entry strip gauges are between 0.17 mm and 0.55 mm. Exit gauges range from 0.12 mm to 0.36 mm. Strip width may vary from 700 to 1,230 mm. At a coil diameter of 2,000 mm, maximum coil weight amounts to 24.15 tons. Steel grades include DR7 to DR10.

Source: Primetals Technologies

EVRAZ NTMK control room

Primetals Technologies wins another order from EVRAZ NTMK to supply automation and electrical equipment for reconstruction of a blast furnace

  • Process automation optimizes operational parameters and reduces coke consumption
  • Fully virtualized automation system reduces servicing costs
  • Primetals Technologies also upgraded blast furnace #7, which has been in operation since the beginning of 2018

EVRAZ Nizhniy Tagil Metallurgical Plant (EVRAZ NTMK), a Russian steel producer, has awarded Primetals Technologies an order to supply the automation and electrical equipment for its reconstructed blast furnace #6. The basic automation (level 1) and the process optimization (level 2) will be installed as a virtualized automation system on central, redundant servers, which will drastically reduce servicing costs, especially those for future upgrades. The new process automation will enable the operational parameters of the furnace to be optimized and coke consumption to be reduced. The order is worth several million euros. The blast furnace is scheduled to be commissioned by the middle of 2020. Primetals Technologies previously supplied the electrical equipment and automation for the blast furnace #7, which has been in operation since the beginning of March 2018.

After running for 15 years, blast furnace #6 was shut down at the start of 2018. The blast furnace will be completely demolished, including the secondary plant equipment, such as the stockhouse, hot-blast stove, gas cleaning and dedusting systems. It will be completely rebuilt, and as from 2020 is scheduled to supply the hot metal for the plant in Nizhniy Tagil together with blast furnace # 7, which was brought into operation in 2018.

With an annual production of 4.9 million metric tons of hot metal and 4.2 million metric tons of steel, EVRAZ NTMK is one of the largest steel works in Russia. The integrated iron and steel works is located in the city of Nizhniy Tagil in the Sverdlovsk Region of the Urals. It primarily produces train wheels, rails, structural steel, pipe blanks and semifinished products. Nizhniy Tagil is one of the oldest Russian steelmaking and mining centers.

A major reason for winning the order was the company’s good experience the with automation and electrical equipment Primetals Technologies had installed in blast furnace #7. In the past two years, Primetals Technologies has also received orders to install automation equipment in five blast furnaces in Brazil, Europe and India.

Control room of blast furnace #7 with automation and electrical equipment installed by Primetals Technologies for EVRAZ NTMK in Nizhniy Tagil, Russia. By the middle of 2020, Primetals Technologies will also install the automation and electrical equipment for the upgraded blast furnace #6.

Source: Primetals Technologies

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AOD converter at Outokumpu

AOD converter modernized by Primetals Technologies started up at Outokumpu in Tornio, Finland

In December 2018, the no. 1 AOD converter modernized by Primetals Technologies was started up at the Tornio works of Outokumpu Stainless Oy, a Finnish stainless-steel producer. The project involved fitting the converter with a new tilting drive, trunnion ring and other associated equipment, including the electrical installations and automation. The Vaicon Drive Damper system developed by Primetals Technologies was also installed on the tilting drive. It reduces the vibrations produced by the blowing processes and thus the mechanical loads acting on the entire system from the converter down to the foundations. The patented system reduces wear and maintenance costs while also lengthening the service life of the plant. It can be installed in new plants or retrofitted on existing converters.

Outokumpu is one of the world’s leading producers of stainless steels. The company employs around 10,000 people in over 30 countries, and has its headquarters in Helsinki, Finland. The works in Tornio, Lapland, is an integrated production complex with a cold rolling capacity of 1.2 million metric tons per annum. The chromite ore used in the works comes from a mining operation in nearby Kemi, which is also run by Outokumpu.

Primetals Technologies was responsible for the planning, manufacturing and supply of the new converter equipment. This covered the trunnion ring, tilting drive, including the damping system, the rotary joint and the pipework. The scope of supply also included the level 1 software and hardware for the tilting drive and damping system. The major components are a safety PLC, remote IOs, frequency converter, local control pulpits, engineering station and a process data recording system. The process images required for visualization are integrated into the existing control system. Primetals Technologies also handled supervision of the installation, commissioning and start-up of the AOD converter.

The AOD (argon-oxygen-decarburization) refining process is used to produce stainless and high-alloyed steels. Large quantities of oxygen, argon and nitrogen are injected laterally to mix the bath thoroughly and minimize the unwanted slagging of alloying elements. This process-related lateral injection during the refining process sets the bath and the several hundred metric tons of the AOD converter in vibration. This causes dynamic stresses, which reduce the service life of the mechanical components of the plant, and increase the amount of maintenance required, especially on account of premature wear on the bearings and gearing of the tilting drive.

The Vaicon Drive Damper developed and patented by Primetals Technologies reduces the induced vibrations and the associated mechanical stress on the converter mechanism by more than 50 percent. The damping system consists of two hydraulic dampers developed jointly with Hainzl, an Austrian company, as well as measuring systems, and evaluation and control software. The dampers are installed parallel to the torque support of the converter tilt drive, and are driven independently of it. This design ensures high availability and also makes it easy to retrofit in existing plants. Each damper has a closed hydraulic circuit, which makes an additional, external hydraulic system unnecessary. The damping effect is achieved by means of an electrohydraulic proportional throttle valve, and is therefore continuously adjustable. The thermal energy generated by the damping is dissipated by an integrated water cooling system.

The dampers are equipped with a position measuring system as well as pressure and temperature sensors. All process data – such as vibration displacement, temperature, pressure and damping force – is recorded and evaluated by software developed by Primetals Technologies. This facilitates a fast, effective response to the momentary vibration state of the converter.

Source: Primetals Technologies

EAF Quantum electric arc furnace

Chengdu Changfeng orders EAF Quantum electric arc furnace and ladle furnace from Primetals Technologies

Chinese steel producer Chengdu Changfeng Steel Group Co., Ltd. (Chengdu Changfeng) placed an order with Primetals Technologies to supply an EAF Quantum electric arc furnace and a ladle furnace for its plant in Dujiayan city, Sichuan Province. This marks the 9th EAF Quantum for China. The EAF Quantum furnace is designed to handle scrap steel of vary varied composition and quality. The electrical energy requirement of the electric arc furnace is extremely low because the scrap is preheated. This reduces both the operating costs and the CO2 emissions. The twin ladle furnace sets the desired steel grades and the correct casting temperature. The new furnaces are scheduled to be commissioned in early 2020.

Chengdu Changfeng is a medium-sized state-owned enterprise based in Chengdu, Sichuan Province. The company operates three steel branches, one oxygen production company, and one mechanical manufacturing and processing company. For the new EAF Quantum electric arc furnace and the twin ladle furnace, Primetals Technologies will supply the complete mechanical and electrical process equipment and the automation technology. This includes the automated scrap yard management, the automated charging process, automation of the oxygen injection and sand refilling, as well as the Level 2 automation which makes the plant ready for Industry 4.0.

The EAF Quantum developed by Primetals Technologies combines proven elements of shaft furnace technology with an innovative scrap charging process, an efficient preheating system, a new tilting concept for the lower shell, and an optimized tapping system. This all adds up to very short melting cycles. The electricity consumption is considerably lower than that of a conventional electric arc furnace. Together with the lower consumption of electrodes and oxygen, this gives an overall advantage in the specific conversion cost of around 20 percent. In comparison to conventional electric arc furnaces, total CO2 emissions can also be reduced by up to 30 percent per metric ton of crude steel. An integrated dedusting system with modern automatic off gas control fulfills all environmental requirements.

Source: Primetals Technologies

Ultra thin hot rolled strip

World record: Ultra-thin hot rolled strip with a thickness of 0.6 millimeters produced on Arvedi ESP line supplied by Primetals Technologies

  • In a world first, a casting-rolling line has achieved a thickness of just 0.6 millimeters
  • Thin hot strip now covers more than 80 percent of cold-rolled thicknesses
  • Extended product range, especially for cold strip substitutes

In October 2018, an Arvedi ESP (Endless Strip Production) line installed in a plant belonging to the Chinese steel producer Rizhao Steel Group Co., Ltd (Rizhao) produced ultra-thin hot rolled strip with a thickness of just 0.6 millimeters for the very first time. Hot rolled strip as thin as this had never before been achieved anywhere in the world. This thin strip can cover more than 80 percent of regular commercial cold-rolled thicknesses. This widens Rizhao’s range of products, especially for cold strip substitutes. After the line entered service in April, success was achieved just six months later.

Following on from 10 years of continued development of the endless concept, this latest production record was achieved during a test in which eight coils were produced with strip thicknesses of less than 0.8 millimeters. This production sequence involved first progressively reducing the strip thickness to 0.75, 0.7 and finally 0.6 millimeters, before continuing the sequence with increasing thicknesses. ESP mills are guaranteed to produce strip thicknesses of 0.8 millimeters, which are used industrially and traded on the market for direct applications. Whereas a strip thickness of 0.8 millimeters covers around 50 percent of cold-rolled thicknesses, a strip thickness of 0.6 millimeters can cover more than 80 percent of cold-rolled thicknesses. Conventional hot strip production has a lower thickness limit of 1.8 millimeters, or 1.2 millimeters for special processes.

This success was made possible by the familiar properties of the ESP process, such as an extremely high process stability accompanied by constant speeds and temperatures. At the same time, advances were made in technologies that, in their original form, had only been used in cold rolling mills for high-quality products, the process being controlled by “ultra-thin rolling technology” based on the control concepts applied in cold rolling technology.

The Arvedi ESP system produces hot strip directly from liquid steel in a continuous, uninterrupted production process in a linked casting and rolling mill. Mills of this type have an energy consumption and associated costs up to 45 percent lower than those of conventional mills with separate casting and rolling processes. They also have substantially reduced CO2 emissions. Furthermore, the dimensions of these mills, with a length of only 155 meters, are considerably more compact than those of conventional casting and rolling mills. The casting and rolling line is controlled by standardized, integrated basic (level 1) and process (level 2) automation, which ensures finely coordinated interaction of the casting and rolling processes.

Rizhao Steel Co., Ltd. (Rizhao Steel) is a company in the Rizhao Steel Holding Group with headquarters 30 kilometers from Rizhao Harbor in the south of Shandong Province. The company has an annual production capacity of around 15 million metric tons of crude steel. The product portfolio of Rizhao Steel covers hot-rolled coils, wire, rods and small I-beams, which are primarily sold to Chinese customers.

Arvedi ESP mill no. 4 is one of five casting and rolling mills that Rizhao ordered from Primetals Technologies. It is designed for an annual production of 1.7 million metric tons of high-quality, ultra-thin hot strip, in widths ranging from 900 to 1,300 millimeters. The maximum casting speed is seven meters per minute, and the coil weight 28 metric tons.

Source: Primetals Technologies

Finishing mill motor room at California Steel in Fontana

California Steel Awards Two Upgrade Projects to Primetals Technologies

  • 86″ Hot Strip Mill main drives and motors upgrade to enable continuous rolling and expand product mix
  • Upgrade of Continuous Galvanizing Line drives and automation system to improve utilization
  • Mid-2020, mid-2022 start-ups expected

To expand its product mix and improve utilization, California Steel Industries (CSI), has contracted with Primetals Technologies for two electrical and automation projects for its 86″ Hot Strip Mill and #2 Continuous Galvanizing Line in Fontana, California, USA. The Continuous Galvanizing Line upgrade is scheduled for a mid-2020 completion, and the 86″ Hot Strip Mill project is expected to be complete by mid-2022.

Following an earlier Level 1 and Level 2 upgrade, the scope of the 86″ Hot Strip Mill project includes a detailed migration plan for new motors, drives and power distribution for six finishing mill stands. Primetals Technologies is supplying medium voltage motors, medium voltage drives, transformers and switchgear, as well as engineering and commissioning. When completed, the upgraded mill will enable CSI to expand its product mix, minimize delays and improve mill utilization.

The electrical and automation upgrade of CSI’s #2 Continuous Galvanizing Line will be implemented in multiple phases. It will improve mill utilization by replacing equipment nearing obsolescence, including AC and DC drives, Level 1 automation, Level 2 automation and HMI. The project scope also includes engineering and commissioning.

California Steel Industries, Inc. began operations in 1984 and is the leading producer of flat rolled steel in the Western United States, producing the widest range of flat rolled steel products in the region. The plant in Fontana, California, has the capacity to produce more than two million tons of hot rolled, pickled and oiled, galvanized, and cold rolled sheet, and electric resistance welded pipe steel.

Finishing mill motor room at California Steel in Fontana, California (Photo courtesy CSI).

Primetals Technologies, Limited headquartered in London, United Kingdom is a worldwide leading engineering, plant-building and lifecycle services partner for the metals industry. The company offers a complete technology, product and service portfolio that includes integrated electrics, automation and environmental solutions. This covers every step of the iron and steel production chain, extending from the raw materials to the finished product – in addition to the latest rolling solutions for the nonferrous metals sector. Primetals Technologies is a joint venture of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Siemens. Mitsubishi-Hitachi Metals Machinery (MHMM) – an MHI consolidated group company with equity participation by Hitachi, Ltd. and the IHI Corporation – holds a 51% stake and Siemens a 49% stake in the joint venture. The company employs around 7,000 employees worldwide. Further information is available on the Internet at