News and Press Releases

London, April 06, 2017

Primetals Technologies starts-up modernized continuous billet caster at Valbruna in Italy

  • Plant produces stainless steel and special alloy billets with a 180 millimeter cross-section
  • Basis created for conversion to even larger formats
  • Modernization will facilitate production of finished products with larger dimensions

The three-strand continuous billet caster modernized by Primetals Technologies was started-up at the Bolzano production site of Italian steel producer Acciaierie Valbruna S.p.A. The plant is now able to produce stainless steel and special alloy billets with larger cross-sections up to 180 millimeters. The machine radius of the plant also was increased from seven to nine meters, setting the stage for producing even larger cross-sections after further modernization at a later date. Primetals Technologies upgraded the continuous caster in 2015 to increase its availability. Modernization work on the caster was carried out during a planned shutdown in September 2016.

Acciaierie Valbruna - based in Vicenza, Italy - is a market leader in the steel industry, making and supplying stainless steel and special metal alloys. It is a private company with over 1,500 employees, and produces over 170,000 metric tons of high-quality special steels every year. The Bolzano production site specializes in stainless steel and special alloy rods with round and hexagonal cross-sections.

Primetals Technologies supplied the three-strand continuous billet caster to Acciaierie Valbruna's Bolzano plant in 1992. It is designed as a bow-type caster with a machine radius of seven meters, and has an annual production capacity of 200,000 metric tons. As part of the modernization work, Primetals Technologies increased the machine radius to nine meters, essential for producing steels with a cross-section greater than 160 millimeters, providing new molds (160 and 180), hydraulic oscillator modifications, new secondary cooling. Also the runout area was completely reviewed with the installation of a new vertical hydraulic shear (800 tons capacity). This conversion also created the basis for subsequent production of billets with a 200 millimeter cross-section.

Three-strand continuous billet caster from Primetals Technologies at the Bolzano plant site of Italian steel producer Acciaierie Valbruna S.p.A.

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.