Tag Archives: China Steel

Guangxi Guixin orders EAF Quantum electric arc furnace from Primetals Technologies

  • Tapping weight of maximum 80 metric tons

  • First application of split tapping process reduces tap-to-tap time

  • Plant concept reduces electrical energy requirement, operating costs and CO2 emissions

  • High degree of automation

The Chinese steel producer Guangxi Guixin Iron & Steel Group Co., Ltd  (Guangxi Guixin) has placed an order with Primetals Technologies to supply an EAF Quantum electric arc furnace for its Hezhou, Guangxi works. The furnace has a tapping weight of 80 metric tons and will replace to smaller existing arc furnaces. For the first time, an EAF Quantum arc furnace features the new split tapping process: Tapping is performed under full power with a tap-to-tap time of just 26 minutes. The furnace has an extremely low requirement of electrical energy, which also contributes to a reduction in both operating costs and CO2 emissions. The high degree of automation, starting from the scrapyard, makes the EAF Quantum ready for Industry 4.0. Commissioning of the new furnace is scheduled for mid-2019.

Guixin Iron and Steel Group Co., Ltd. was established in 1993. The privately owned group comprises companies active in the steel, real estate, port, finance, and trade businesses. Its steelmaking capacity amounted to 8 million metric tons (2017), mainly rebar and wire rod and coil. The production site in Hezhou is EAF based and produces long products.

Primetals Technologies will supply the entire mechanical and electrical process equipment for the EAF Quantum electric arc furnace. This includes the automated scrap yard management, the automated charging process as well as automated oxygen lancing and sand filling as well as level 2 automation, making the plant ready for Industry 4.0. A special feature of the new EAF Quantum is the newly introduced split tapping process. This allows for continuous tapping with smaller but faster heats due to the large hot heel of the furnace and Primetals Technologies´ FAST tapping solution, significantly reducing tap-to-tap times.

Developed by Primetals Technologies, the EAF Quantum combines proven elements of shaft furnace technology with an innovative scrap feeding process, efficient preheating system, new tipping concept for the lower shell, and an optimized tap system to attain significantly reduced tap-to-tap times. The electrical energy requirement is considerably less than that of a conventional electric arc furnace. In conjunction with reduced consumption of electrodes and oxygen, a cumulative benefit of around 20 percent is achieved for respective conversion costs. Overall, reductions of up to 30 percent of CO2 emissions per metric ton of crude steel can be attained when compared to conventional arc furnaces.

electric arc furnace

EAF Quantum electric arc furnace from Primetals Technologies

Source: Primetals Technologies

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SMS Group High-Speed Wire Rod Mills at Guangdong Guoxin

Chinese Guangdong Guoxin Industrial Co., Ltd. has awarded SMS group the Final Acceptance Certificate after successful commissioning of the two single-strand wire rod mills for its Jieyang works, Guangdong province.

Smooth commissioning and safe operation

The works is designed for an annual capacity of 1.4 million tons (700,000 tons per year per wire rod mill). The two single-strand high-speed mills roll wire rod in diameters from 5.5 to 25 millimeters and rebars in diameters between 6 and 14 millimeters. The originally planned rolling speed of up to 105 meters per second has been exceeded; wire rod sizes have already been rolled at speeds of 120 meters per second. The steel grades to be rolled comprise cold-heading, alloyed, spring and stainless steels as well as tire cord and welding wire.

SMS group supplied the high-speed area mechanical equipment starting from the four-stand pre-finishing mill, shear system in front of the finishing block, 6+4-stand finishing block arrangement, pinch roll, loop laying head and all related water boxes. Due to the well proven 6+4-stand arrangement, all final dimensions can be finish-rolled in a maximum of four passes and thus be rolled thermomechanically, i.e. at low temperatures and with close dimensional tolerances.

Besides the mechanical equipment, SMS group provided the electrical and automation system for the complete line (including motors, drives and sensors), and was responsible for the supervision services for erection and commissioning.

SMS group is a group of companies internationally active in plant construction and mechanical engineering for the steel and nonferrous metals industry. It has some 13,500 employees who generate worldwide sales of more than EUR 3 billion. The sole owner of the holding company SMS GmbH is the Familie Weiss Foundation.

Source: SMS Group

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Uncertainty Dampens Trading Activity in Emerging Steel Markets

Difficult trading conditions persist in Brazil. Buyers started to push for lower prices, in view of the downward movement being witnessed in other global steel markets.

Russian steelmakers are under pressure to lower plant utilisation rates to support transaction values. Market fundamentals remain weak. Local trading houses are booking for only immediate requirements due to price fluctuations and working capital problems. Shipments to tube fabricators, OEMs and mechanical engineering companies continue to underperform expectations.

Business sentiment deteriorated in India. Stockists operating in states, adjacent to the Bay of Bengal, witnessed a fall in business activity with the onset of the monsoon season. Meanwhile, steel manufacturers hoped that steady pricing, in July, will persuade customers to place orders rather than postponing purchasing decisions.

The Ukrainian market is slow ahead of the summer vacations. Order intake at the mills is very subdued, with few deals being concluded. Transaction figures fell as producers became eager to book business.

Procurement activity in Turkey is forecast to pick up after the holiday period. However, cautious service centres are booking for only immediate requirements, in anticipation that the revival will be short-lived. The third quarter is usually a slow season for the local steel industry

The United Arab Emirates market is very quiet, with no business activity of any significance taking place during the holy month of Ramadan. Domestic producers continually speak of higher prices but they are flexible when there is business to place.

Source: MEPS – Developing Markets Steel Review – June 2017 Edition

Stainless steel rolling mills commissioned at Beibu Gulf, China

Fives and Beihai Chengde Ferronickel Stainless Steel Co., a subsidiary of China’s Chengde Group, successfully commissioned three rolling mills for stainless steel production at the company’s facility in Beibu Gulf.

The contract to design and supply 20-Hi rolling mills was entrusted to Fives in 2013. The first coil was rolled in December 2014, making 6200 rolled coils to date, of which 40% low nickel stainless steel grade 201 and 60% stainless steel grade. The project had a very tight schedule; it only took 6 months from the first rolled coil to achieve nominal production capacity.

The final acceptance act was signed in November 2015 for all three rolling mills. Beihai Chengde Ferronickel Stainless Steel Co. issued a letter of satisfaction to Fives, appreciating teams’ efforts for a qualified performance.

Fives has been specializing in design and supply of cold rolling mills worldwide since the 1950s, having its design office and manufacturing plant in Seclin, France.

Source: Steel Fives Group

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DEVELOPING MARKETS HIGHLIGHTS – FROM MEPS INTERNATIONAL LTD

Brazilian steelmakers attempted to push through a price increase for October’s production campaign. Predictably, distributors and end-users have been reluctant to commit to forward orders.

Russian trading houses remain adamant that the latest initiative to advance flat product transaction values does not reflect real demand. Meanwhile, long product steelmakers have again delayed releasing their November basis quotations.

Negative price expectations have gained momentum in India. Local steelmakers are faced with a dilemma of whether to attempt to ride out the difficult domestic trading conditions, or downgrade planned production targets. Meanwhile, the Chinese steel market remains unsettled. Distributors and downstream industries plan to avoid holding or building inventory in the interim.

Ukrainian finished steel prices have continued to trend downwards. The local association of metal producers, Metallurgprom, has forecast that crude steel production in November will reach 2.06 million tonnes – up 1.9 percent compared with September’s output.

Turkish steelmakers have struggled to adapt to October’s unpredictable business environment. Local steel traders are booking material for only short term needs, in anticipation of continuing price reductions.

Procurement activity in the United Arab Emirates was less vigorous, this month, than in September. Local stockists have been wary of finalising purchases in a falling market. Meanwhile, rolling mills opted to reduce their selling figures owing to the difficult market conditions and strong price competition from foreign sources.

Weak underlying demand remains a constraint on Mexican steelmakers’ ambitions to lift transaction values. Meanwhile, the National Chamber of Iron and Steel Industry (CANACERO) has welcomed the government’s decision to impose a temporary 15 percent import tariff on five steel products – including cold rolled coil and wire rod. This measure will be in place for a period of six months.

Source: MEPS – Developing Markets Steel Review – October Edition

SEPTEMBER STEEL PRICES IN CHINA AT LOWEST SINCE APRIL 2009

The MEPS “All Steel Products Composite” dealer price in China hit a 53 month low in September this year. With weakening demand and continued oversupply, the October figure is likely to be down even further. In fact, it may be January before any notable recovery takes place.

Much of the steel price erosion in China has been the result of significant cuts in the cost of steelmaking raw materials, which commenced in the early months of this year. The reduced input costs have not improved the financial prospects of the Chinese mills, however. Many of them are suffering from large debts which need to be funded. Furthermore, a significant number are facing huge costs for emission controls and other environmental issues. Subsidies are keeping many steel companies in business.

The growth rate in local demand is slowing. The steelmakers are keeping output at a reasonably strong level by increasing the volume of exports. These are less profitable than domestic sales. Oversupply is preventing the steel producers from increasing their margins.

Chinese domestic steel prices have been in retreat for the past twelve months. The MEPS “All Products Composite figure” for China declined by 15 percent between September 2013 and 2014. Chinese steel selling values have been below the figures recorded at the time of the global economic crisis for the last five months.

The situation in China is in stark contrast to that in all the other major steel producing parts of the world. The downturn in other regions has been much less dramatic during the last twelve months.

In North America, strong economic growth has prompted higher steel demand. This has helped the steelmakers to push up average prices for their products by 5 percent over the past year. This developed in spite of substantial decreases in international prices for steelmaking raw materials.

Since September 2013, the average domestic steel price in the European Union has declined by 6 percent. This reduction is smaller than that which occurred in China, despite weakness of the euro relative to the US dollar – making raw materials more expensive in the national currency.

The savage reduction in Chinese domestic prices so far this year, and probably in the months to come, will have serious consequences for steelmakers in other parts of the world. Exports from China will become more competitive in international markets. In turn, this will put negative pressure on local steel selling values and threaten any recovery in demand.
Source: MEPS China Steel Review – September Edition