6 September 2016
Ilyich Iron and Steel Works of Mariupol (MMKI) of Metinvest Group launched a large-scale revamp project to build Continuous Casting Machine (CCM) No.4. Total investments in the project will amount to about $150 million. New equipment will allow for higher productivity, cost reduction, steel product quality improvement, and environmental improvements in Mariupol.
On September 05, MMKI management in the person of general director Yuriy Zinchenko signed a contract in Linz with Primetals Technologies Austria GmbH, a worldwide leading manufacturer of equipment for ferrous and non-ferrous metallurgy, for the construction of the continuous casting machine.
A new two-strand CCM will produce 2.5 million tonnes of premium cast slabs per year for re-rolling on Mill 1700. The premium segment will become accessible due to introduction of innovative technologies, Level 3 Process Automation system, and the ladle furnace steel refining technology, which is also new to MMKI.
When implemented, the project will allow to improve the environmental situation in the city. After the commissioning of the new equipment, ingot casting area will be taken out of operation and the blooming will be shut down. The content of dust in the CCM flue gases outlet the gas cleaning will be maximum 12 mg/m3, whereas the Ukrainian standards require up to 50 mg/m3 and the European standards up to 30 mg/m3. All workers from the workshops to be shut down will be employed to operate the new facilities or in other business units of the enterprise.
Presently, MMKI uses a high-cost steel casting technology. The construction of a top-notch energy efficient equipment will give the opportunity to increase the production of semi-finished products by 30% to 4 million tonnes of slabs per year. The new technology is designed to cut back hot metal, lime and ferroalloys consumption leading to slab cost reduction.
Preparatory work has been done: the condition of foundations and steelwork has been inspected, geotechnical and topographical surveys have been performed, and the detail engineering has been developed. The construction of the CCM is scheduled to start in September 2016, with commissioning slated for 2018.
Yuriy Ryzhenkov, Chief Executive Officer of Metinvest Group:
- Even though Metinvest Group has been operating amid military actions and the heaviest economic crisis for the last two years, we continue delivering our investment program. When the competition in the steel market grows, we cannot afford to cancel the development projects. We upgrade our operations, increase their efficiency and improve our environmental foot-print. This is the only way to keep our positions in the world markets.
Yuriy Zinchenko, general director of Ilyich Iron and Steel Works of Mariupol said,
- As far back as yesterday we thought about how to survive, keep the operations going and retain the jobs. We were cut off from the railway connections, raw material deliveries and gas supply. We were under shelling. Yet we were able to stand, and are now actively renewing our facilities and working on environmental aspects. Now, when the outdated open-hearth process is shut down, we need to be more active in developing basic oxygen steelmaking and compensate the loss of steelmaking facilities. We remain true to our principles by implementing technologies that are state-of-the-art and best available both in terms of their efficiency and environmental safety.