News and Press Releases

London, October 27, 2016

Primetals Technologies to modernize flat rolling block for Böhler Edelstahl in Austria

  • Plant to be fitted with new automation and drives technology
  • Further improvements to availability and product quality
  • New technology will increase energy efficiency and cut maintenance costs
  • "RollMaster" to handle generation and management of pass schedules


Primetals Technologies has won an order from Böhler Edelstahl GmbH & Co KG (Böhler Edelstahl), a company of the Special Steel Division of voestalpine, to modernize the flat rolling block at its Kapfenberg plant in Austria. The plant will be equipped with a new drives- and automation system. The "RollMaster", specially developed for long product rolling mills, will handle the generation and management of the pass schedules. The project is designed to increase plant availability, improve product quality, boost energy efficiency and cut maintenance costs. Modernization work is scheduled to take place during a one-month plant shutdown mid-2017.


The flat rolling block consists of three horizontal and two vertical stands, and produces flat bars in widths ranging from 43 to 205 millimeters and in thicknesses from 4.5 to 86 millimeters. A hydraulic drive system and a now obsolete, proprietary automation system have been in use since commissioning in 1988. Spare parts supply and adequate servicing can no longer be ensured. Böhler Edelstahl therefore decided to ask Primetals Technologies to completely modernize the automation and drives system. In previous years, Primetals Technologies has equipped the continuous rolling mill in the multiline rolling mill and the roughing stand of the blooming mill with new automation and drives technology, and supplied new drives for the six-stand HV-combination mill.


Primetals Technologies will be supplying new main and auxiliary drives with Sinamics S120 frequency converters, a new operator control and monitoring system based on Simatic PCS7, and new main gearboxes. The elimination of the hydraulic systems will reduce maintenance costs and increase plant availability which, in turn, will boost the productivity of the rolling line. Energy requirements as well as the consumption of hydraulic oil and cooling water will fall substantially. In future the "RollMaster", specially designed for long product rolling mills, will handle the generation and management of the pass schedules. This software is the link between the production planning system and the plant automation. Primetals Technologies will also handle engineering, manufacturing, commissioning and customer training.


Böhler Edelstahl employs more than 2,000 people, and produced some 162,000 metric tons of steel in fiscal 2016. The company specializes in the production of long products and open-die forgings made of tool steel, high-speed steel, special materials and nickel-based alloys. Böhler Edelstahl GmbH & Co KG was founded in 1991 and is a wholly owned subsidiary company of voestalpine Edelstahl GmbH.


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.