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London, October 20, 2016

Last of three LD (BOF) converters from Primetals Technologies starts up at SSAB in Finland

  • Optimized converter design boosts productivity
  • Maintenance-free converter suspension ensures long useful life
  • New blowing lance geometry and Vaicon slag stopper improve steel quality
  • New refractory concept will ensure long converter lining campaign

In September, the last of three LD (BOF) converters supplied by Primetals Technologies commenced operation at the Raahe, Finland works of SSAB Europe Oy. The first converter was started up in October 2015, the second one in May 2016. With almost unchanged space requirements, the new converters have a larger reaction volume. The maintenance-free Vaicon Link 2.0, which will be used as the converter suspension, minimizes stress caused by heat-induced deformation and has a longer useful life. A blowing lance tip geometry adjusted to the new converter geometry, bottom stirring and a slag stopper improve the metallurgical properties of the steel produced. A new refractory concept will ensure long converter lining campaign.

SSAB Europe Oy is part of the SSAB group, a leading producer on the global market for Advanced High Strength Steels (AHSS) and Quenched & Tempered Steels (Q&T), strip, plate and tubular products, as well as construction solutions. The group has an annual steel production capacity of 8.8 million metric tons of steel and operates production plants in Sweden, Finland and the USA. The integrated steel mill in Raahe is the largest production facility of its kind in the Nordic countries.

The existing converters in the Raahe factory each have a tapping weight of 125 metric tons. Primetals Technologies is replacing them with three converters featuring a detachable bottom and a bottom stirring system. The converter has an optimized geometry, which enables a larger reaction volume as well as a new concept for the refractory lining which has a longer useful life. The Primetals Technologies scope includes engineering of the converter vessels, trunnion rings and the Vaicon Link 2.0 maintenance-free suspension systems. The converters feature the Vaicon Stopper to minimize slag transfer on tapping. The tip of the blowing lance is adapted to the new converter geometry, which improves the blowing process and therefore the metallurgical properties of the steel produced. Primetals Technologies is also responsible for monitoring the pre-assembly and installation work as well as for commissioning.

Primetals Technologies, Limited headquartered in London, United Kingdom is a worldwide leading engineering, plant-building and lifecycle services partner for the metals industry. The company offers a complete technology, product and service portfolio that includes integrated electrics, automation and environmental solutions. This covers every step of the iron and steel production chain, extending from the raw materials to the finished product – in addition to the latest rolling solutions for the nonferrous metals sector. Primetals Technologies is a joint venture of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Siemens. Mitsubishi-Hitachi Metals Machinery (MHMM) - an MHI consolidated group company with equity participation by Hitachi, Ltd. and the IHI Corporation - holds a 51% stake and Siemens a 49% stake in the joint venture. The company employs around 7,000 employees.