Following its reconstruction, NLMK has started hot testing and produced the first slab at its Reheating Furnace No.3, a facility for heating slabs prior to hot rolling. Furnace capacity has increased 23% to 320 tonnes per hour. The revamped furnace will allow a 35% reduction in specific fuel consumption, decreased metal loss, lower air emissions, and stabilized rolling.
Reheating Furnace No.3 is the third new type facility at NLMK’s Hot Rolling Operations in Lipetsk (Reheating Furnace No.5 was revamped and commissioned in 2004, Reheating Furnace No.4 – in 2007). The design features of these furnaces ensure uniform and energy efficient heating of slabs resulting in high precision strip parameters during rolling. The technological capabilities of these units enable them to process both carbon and transformer (grain-oriented) steel slabs.
The project forms part of the action plan aimed at the reconstruction of Hot Strip Mill 2000 equipment with a view to expanding hot-rolled steel production at NLMK’s Lipetsk site to 5.7 million tonnes of high quality steel by improving the productivity of existing equipment.
This project, worth approximately RUR1.9 billion, has been implemented jointly with CMI (Belgium) as part of Stage II of NLMK’s Technical Upgrade Program.
Key consumers of NLMK’s hot-rolled steel in coils and sheets include construction, shipbuilding, and automotive companies, as well as pipe manufacturers. The Company uses its hot-rolled steel to produce cold-rolled, galvanized and pre-painted products, as well as for the production of electrical steels at its Lipetsk and Yekaterinburg sites.