Tag Archives: Steel Mills

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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Arlenico SpA and Feralpi Siderurgica SpA, two key Italian wire rod producers, have each ordered a four-stand MEERdrive®PLUS finishing block from SMS group within one week. Both wire-rod finishing blocks will be integrated in the companies’ existing plants.

Arlenico, part of the Duferco Italia Holding, a special quality wire rod producer located beside the Lecco Lake, chose the four-stand MEERdrive®PLUS block to be installed in the existing wire rod line at its Caleotto plant. This will allow the company to serve the market with products of the tightest tolerances ever produced, as thanks to the heavy-duty machine supplied by SMS group and a sophisticated water cooling line included in the project, it will for the first time be able to apply the thermomechanical rolling process.

Feralpi, producer of rebar and wire rod for construction in Italy, located beside the Garda Lake, is investing in the four-stand MEERdrive®PLUS block in order to increase production and the rolling speed and be able to extend the size range produced and achieve enhanced final mechanical properties. Also in this case a sophisticated water cooling line will serve the four-passes wire rod sizing block.

MEERdrive®PLUS is a variant of the MEERdrive® technology, a revolutionary drive concept for modern wire rod production. It uses individual drives with small low-voltage motors for each stand. Since all finished sizes are rolled in the MEERdrive®PLUS block, it is possible to realize “one-family rolling” in the rolling mill reducing the otherwise required mill downtimes for size and ring changing.

The MEERdrive®PLUS blocks, which will both be installed after an existing ten-passes block, will be four-stand “oval-round-round-round” sizing blocks, capable of rolling wire rod diameters from 4.5 milli­meters up to 27 millimeters at speeds up to 120 meters per second – also at a temperature as low as 750 degrees centigrade. Excellent tolerances down to 0.05 millimeters and 50 percent ovality can be achieved.

These two new finishing blocks to be supplied to Arlenico and Feralpi are references number eleven and twelve, documenting the long success story of the MEERdrive® technology which started with block number one supplied to Sinobras in 2007. Arlenico and Feralpi will benefit from a wide range of outstanding economical and operational advantages. For example, it will be possible to reduce the required roll inventory to a minimum.

SMSgroup Image
From left: Marco Giacomuzzi, SMS group Vice President Bar & Wire Rod Mills; Domenico Campanella, Duferco CEO; Nicola Redolfi, SMS group General Manager Sales; Giovanni Dugoni, Duferco CTO; Filippo Verlezza, SMS group Sales Manager.

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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First mill for semi-finished products with hydraulic roll gap adjustment and roll gap control successfully commissioned

Xining Special Steel grants SMS group final acceptance certificate.

The Chinese company Xining Special Steel Co., Ltd, Qinghai Province, a leading producer of high-grade and specialty steel, has granted the SMS group the final acceptance certificate for the successfully commissioned mill for semi-finished products.

The mill comprises a reversing roughing stand and a finishing mill with eight HCS® (Hydraulic Compact Stands) in horizontal/vertical arrangement. All millstands are equipped with roll adjustment systems and hydraulic systems for axial adjustment of the rolls. In combination with a control concept and an integrated inline profile gauge (MEERgauge®), this innovative rolling concept sets new standards in terms of dimensional accuracy of the final products and economic efficiency of the mill. For the first time, it is possible to roll even large round bars within narrow rolling tolerances.

Thanks to the hydraulic adjustment mechanisms in combination with the latest measuring technology, even the narrowest rolling tolerances in the range of ¼ of the DIN EN value can be achieved. Furthermore, the ASC® control system (Automatic Size Control) allows quick and automated adjustment of the finishing mill, saving time and money.

Xining Special Steel is now able to produce high-quality round bars from high-grade and specialty steel in diameters between 80 and 280 millimeters at an annual production capacity of 800,000 tons.

Following the beginning of commissioning work on the SBQ bar mill also supplied by SMS group, the mill for semi-finished products was installed, tested and successfully commissioned in a mere few months.

Source: SMS Group

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Primetals Technologies receives final acceptance for wire rod mill upgrade from OneSteel in Australia

  • Water cooling line and laying head improvements increase mill utilization, reduce maintenance, improve product qualityRolling speed for smaller diameters increased by more than 10%
  • Reduced coil height and better compacted coil shape
  • Pipe support design incorporates new SR Series laying head pipe technology

Primetals Technologies has received the final acceptance certificate from OneSteel Market Mills in Australia for installed upgrades at its Laverton Wire Rod Mill. Improvements to the water cooling line and laying head have already resulted in higher finishing speeds on small diameter products. Overall effects of the upgrade are expected to boost the single-strand rod mill’s competitive position in the market.

The water cooling line was upgraded with a Morgan Water Box system, which included three traversing boxes, with split water box nozzles and a header design that ensured alignment of the pass line. A set of skid-mounted valves for each water box incorporated high-speed divert valves to minimize uncooled rings. An Enhanced Temperature Control System (ETCS) with recipes and closed-loop temperature control was installed to control the cooling process. Provisions were made in the layout of the water cooling line for an additional cooling box to meet future needs. The laying head was upgraded with a new design pipe support that incorporates the SR Series laying head pipe technology.

After only four weeks of shutdown time, both the new water boxes and the laying head upgrade were installed and running. As production resumed, mill operators immediately saw performance improvements. More efficient water box cooling has resulted in lower laying head temperatures which improved scale conditions on finished rod, decreasing downstream scale losses by 35 percent on average. Nozzle replacement cycles went from four sizes to two. The ETCS has improved overall yield by reducing uncooled front ends and providing consistent temperature throughout the coil.

The mill can now roll faster on small sizes, with speeds increasing from 90 m/s to 102 m/s on 5.5 mm rod and from 90 m/s to 100 m/s on 6.0 mm rod. There has been significant improvement in ring pattern consistency on the cooling conveyor. The post-upgrade coil package has seen coil height reductions of 50 to 100 mm and a better compacted shape.

OneSteel is Australia’s premier manufacturer of steel long products and is a leading metals distribution company in Australia and New Zealand. It has a significant presence in Australian steel as an integrated manufacturer of steel and finished steel products. The company manufactures and distributes a wide range of steel products including hot rolled structural sections, rail, rod, bar, wire and structural pipe and RHS products, and distributes sheet and coil, plate and aluminum products.

SR Series is a registered trademark of Primetals Technologies in certain countries.

Source: Primetals Technologies

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Ampco-Pittsburgh to acquire Åkers AB – Altor becomes shareholder of Ampco-Pittsburgh

Ampco-Pittsburgh Corporation (Ampco-Pittsburgh) announced yesterday that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Åkers AB and certain of its affiliates (Åkers).  Altor Fund II (Altor) will become a significant shareholder of Ampco-Pittsburgh following the closing of the transaction. The combined group is expected to become a world leader within the rolls industry with respect to size, breadth of product and service offering.

Åkers is a world-leading producer of high quality steel rolls and one of Sweden’s oldest companies, founded in 1580. Today, Åkers is one of the largest roll manufacturers outside of China with manufacturing sites in Europe, China and North America. The French subsidiary has been separated from Åkers and will not be acquired as part of the transaction.

We believe that Åkers has a bright future within the Ampco-Pittsburgh group and we look forward to being part of this next exciting journey in the long history of Åkers, says Fredrik Strömholm, Partner at Altor Equity Partners and Member of the Board of Åkers AB.  Following a reorganization, continuous cost improvement programs and a concerted effort to develop the sales organization, Åkers is now a stronger company on the path to recovery.

We look forward to having Åkers as part of the Ampco-Pittsburgh family, says John Stanik, CEO of Ampco-Pittsburgh. Just like Ampco-Pittsburgh and its operating subsidiary Union Electric Steel Corporation, Åkers has an impressive history and heritage holding a strong position within high quality technology rolls. The combined group will have a strong platform to drive both growth and performance globally.

The difficult conditions in the steel industry since 2008 have made the operating environment challenging for the rolls industry. The dedication and commitment from our employees and Altor have made Åkers stronger and more resilient. We are now ready for this next step and we look forward to forming a strong industry leader together with Ampco-Pittsburgh, says Claes Ahrengart, CEO of Åkers AB.

Closing of the transaction is subject to customary regulatory requirements and approvals.

Source: Akers Group
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Revamp with lamella converter suspension systems from SMS group increases yield

SSAB Luleå makes itself fit for the future with a revamped converter shop and Ecoplants facilities from SMS group
At SSAB Luleå, Sweden, SMS group has successfully commissioned the modernized converter shop and the pertaining environmental technology. SSAB fully achieved its own target of increasing the yield of both converters and satisfying the high environmental standards demanded.

Kurt Lindqvist, Project Manager of the Converter Shop at SSAB Luleå, is highly satisfied with the performance of SMS. “The proven technology of SMS provides very good results. Furthermore, the cooperation and communication during the erection and commissioning went very smoothly in an atmosphere of strong team spirit.”

SMS group supplied two converter vessels with lamella suspension and the tilt drive systems. The two-motor tilt drive systems are easily accessible and very maintenance-friendly. The scope of supply also included the converter trunnion bearings, the height increase of the existing trunnion pedestals, and the installation of the vessels and trunnion rings.

Thanks to the design concept developed by SMS group, the new converter vessels have become significantly larger: With an unchanged quantity of charge material of up to 130 tons, the internal volume of the converter has been increased by 10 percent. The additional capacity enables more environment-friendly process control and efficient energy recovery.

This increase in capacity was achieved by improved utilization of the existing installation space. This was possible thanks to the lamella converter suspension system developed and patented by SMS group. It is a maintenance-free converter suspension system designed for arranging the converter vessel in the trunnion ring without restraint.

The converters are well prepared for the thermal loads thanks to the use of the lamella suspension system, along with the design of a larger clearance and the use of high-grade heat-resistant fine-grained structural steels. This is achieved without any additional cooling fluids; sufficient cooling is ensured merely by the natural thermal conditions.

SMS group\’s Ecoplants solution comprised the revamp of the primary gas cooling system of the BOF steelmaking plant. For this, the cooling stacks of both converters were modified and provided with easy-to-maintain SMS group Baumco adjustable skirts. These are lowered hydraulically onto the converter mouth during the blowing phase and they enable the primary gases to be extracted efficiently under suppressed combustion. In addition, diffuse dust emissions are substantially reduced. Gas recovery is used in the best possible way by generating CO gas under suppressed combustion.

The SMS group scope of supplies and services included the revamp of the primary gas cooling system as well as the engineering and supply of the major cooling stack components. These incorporate the adjustable skirts with labyrinth seal and the modernization of the inlet section leading into the scrubbing tower for further flue gas cooling.

The steam produced in the cooling stacks is used as process steam in the entire integrated iron and steel plant. The complete energy recovery from the two cooling stacks is thus performed with extremely high energy efficiency.

“We are highly satisfied with the Ecoplants technology and we have a clean environmental conscience as regards production,” is the opinion of Kurt Lindqvist, Project Manager of the Converter Shop at SSAB Luleå.

SSAB is Scandinavia’s largest producer of flat steels.

Source: SMS Group

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