Increasing pressure to optimize flexibility, productivity, and the quality of the steel manufactured means that digitalized, predictable, and optimized intralogistics processes are essential. Primetals Technologies offers solutions based on the digitalization of all key intralogistics processes, which allows for improved raw material quality, minimized production buffers, increased output, greater profitability, a more efficient flow of materials and goods, and predictable and transparent intralogistics processes.
A scheduler optimizes the production sequence in an aggregate while considering the properties and limitations of material and equipment. Such a specific solution uses a mathematical solver for determining optimal production sequences. A scheduler closely collaborates with the steel factory's Manufacturing Execution System (MES). Therefore, optimizing the throughput and achieving the best possible quality of the end product is essential. The solution works according to rules tailored to the process and has the information required to achieve top steel quality (process know-how). For example, steel grades are allowed to follow one another.
- Online heat scheduler: Allows the optimum route through the melt shop to be planned based on desired casting sequences and the re-assigning of heat orders in the event of downgrades
- Caster scheduler: Generates optimized casting schedules across the multiple casters and multiple strands and adjusts the cutting plan based on detected quality issues
Fig.1- Online heat scheduler
Fig.2- Caster scheduler
Precise knowledge of scrap amounts in stock, finding the required qualities for charging, and having reliable and accurate feedback on the charge preparation are essential for process control, optimized energy input, and reaching target qualities in EAF, BOF, and IF steel production. Therefore, steel producers can integrate monitors in their intralogistics processes to automatically detect critical process conditions by using advanced technologies such as image recognition and help optimize and reduce maintenance efforts.
Intralogistics monitoring solutions combine the experience of a leading metallurgical plant manufacturer with tailor-made advanced hardware and software solutions:
- Scrap profile monitor
- Scrap type monitor
- Scrap composition monitor
Fig.1- Scrap type monitor
Fig.2- Scrap composition monitor
In a steel plant, a tracker collects and shares data about the position and characteristics of the material or moveable assets. A tracker uses state-of-the-art technology to ensure seamless tracking and validate data. An experienced tracker evaluates the collected data, provides analysis tools, creates comprehensive overviews, and generates valuable history reports. A tracker documents, visualizes, and analyzes the assets' actual status. It is tailored to function reliably in a steel factory's high-temperature and dusty environment.
- Fully automated ladle identification
- Online tracking system with detailed information
- Historical information of all ladles
Fig.1- Ladle tracking
Fig.2- RFID tracking
A mover moves material and (semi-finished) products from yards to plants, between different plants, and assists inbound and outbound logistics using rail lines or roads. These specific solutions typically communicate continuously with supervisors to operate reliably and efficiently and intensely collaborate with Trackers to ensure that supervisors receive correct position and status information. A mover is designed as an integrated mechatronics package unit to operate in the harsh industrial environment of a steel factory. The engineering is based on metals production know-how and logistics know-how.
Modular coil shuttle system
- Ensures safe and gentle coil handling
- High reliability
- Maximum coil collection frequency
- Minimum maintenance costs
- Fully automated and autonomous rail-based scrap transfer from scrap yard to meltshop (and vice versa)
- Environmentally-friendly battery-powered scrap transfer car (eMobility)
- Advanced scrap basket identification & tracking system
Fig.1- Modular Coil Shuttle System
A supervisor monitors defined intralogistics processes, optimizes material flows as well as the motion of movers by calculating optimal routes considering defined constraints, and manages fully automated sequences. These specific solutions prevent unplanned stoppages and delays regarding the monitored processes. Usually, a supervisor is seamlessly interconnected with several trackers, controllers, and optimizers to collect information about material and assets. A supervisor has detailed knowledge of plant utilization and material availability, cranes, ladle cars, layouts, and more intralogistics disciplines in a steel factory and can ensure the optimal utilization of materials and assets.
Scrap delivery supervisor
- Automatic guided delivery management
- Seamless monitoring of delivery logistics
- Clear delivery guidance and tracking
- Reduce potential problems due to mixing up different scrap qualities in the yard
- Support and management system for your scrap yard
- Visualization of scrap yard according to layout
- Fully automatic logistic tracking and guiding system for trains, trucks, or vessels (registration and assignment)
- Online position tracking of cranes and lifting gears for automatic tracking of material flow
Fig.1- Scrap-yard supervisor