Manufacture of steel

    The new ‘gold’

    The most frequently used construction material in the world

    Every year around 1.1 billion tons of steel are produced and that figure is growing fast. We can find this fascinating material everywhere: in multi-storey buildings, bridges, trains, machines and in everyday objects like screws, paper clips, pots and knives.

    The manufacture of steel is a hot topic

    The various procedures involved in the manufacture of steel are also fascinating. The most well-known of these is the Linz-Donawitz process (or LD process), also known as the basic oxygen steel making process.

    Liquid pig iron and scrap metal are fed into the LD converter, and flux for making slag is added. Oxygen is blown into the cast via a lance. The elements of harm to steel-such as sulphur, phosphorous and carbon-combust and become flue gas or slag. The scrap is melted due to the great levels of heat produced.
    Electric steel plants with electric arc furnaces are also very widespread. An arc extending from three graphite electrodes to the cast produces temperatures of up to 3500 °C and causes the material to melt. The melting process takes around 30-45 minutes.

    Typical batch sizes for both procedures are 100-150t. There are also still steel moulds which can hold up to 350t.

    Further processing: The crude steel is poured into a steel casting ladle underneath the converter / electric furnace. This ladle is sited on the ladle ferry. After casting, the ferry moves out from underneath the converter and passes the material on to the crane scales for transportation.

    Pneumatic Conveying technology can be used for the injection of carbon and coal into blast furnaces to reduce reliance on metallurgical coke and reduce production costs.

    The RotoFeed can be used as a volumetric metering feeder with a variable speed drive and by incorporating weighing technology into the system a gravimetric version is created which can achieve accuracies of better than ±1% and a turndown ratio of 10:1.

    Alternative Iron Making process

    Schenck Process works with a number of recognised industry leaders including Siemens VAI, POSCO and Hismelt to provide raw materials and feed systems that combine accuracy and reliability to help in the stable production of consistently high quality metal.