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Iron & Steel Review August 2012 Issue

Refractory Special

Challenges of a Refractory Maker in Difficult times

VIEWPOINT

Refractory industry facing challenging times
The refractory industry is small and fragmented, but is very important. The industry is fragmented with more than 150 players. Of which, there are about 16 to 17 major players whereas the remaining are small players. Severe competition within the country as well as with global players, mainly the Chinese manufacturers, has forced the Indian players to operate on thin margins.

Refractory Special

Challenges of a Refractory Maker in Difficult times
As I pen this article, news flashes in the television screen that IMF has lowered India's growth forecast to 6.1% for 2012, the steepest cut for any nation in view of deteriorating global economic situation. The IMF, in its update of the World Economic Outlook, has also cut India's growth projection for 2013 by a similiar margin to 6.5%.

Refractories industry in India and TRL Krosaki Refractories
We are all aware of that refractory industry is inextricably linked to steel industry and in turn steel industry growth is linked to country's GDP growth. India's growth story is just now passing through not so good times.

OCL Refractories : From Prestigious Past to Emerging Challenges
There is uncertainty about growth of refractory business globally, however increasing price trend is likely to give a top line of 30 billion USD in 2012. The need of high performing –premium refractories will be the key driver of value term demand, however reduced consumption due to improved performance may dampen the quantity growth.

CERAMITE® the Ultimate Wear & High Temperature Wear Solution from Elkem Materials for Demanding Environments in Industries
Ceramite® is a range of products incorporating inorganic, composite materials and densely packed particles, especially formulated to give superior performance in applications where wear resistance is a critical operating factor.

Effect of addition of different metal powders on properties of MgO-C
MgO-C is the most popular refractory for working lining of Basic Oxygen Furnace and slag zone of steel ladles. Recently, MgO-C bricks are being used as the total working lining material of steel ladles. Introduction of slag splashing technology and improvement in operating practices has increased the lining life of BOF significantly and specific consumption has also decreased. On the other hand, specific consumption of refractories in steel ladles is quite high and role of refractory quality on ladle life is clearly visible.

NATIONAL TRENDS

Steel Minister gives warm sendoff to wrestlers for London Olympics
Union Minister for Steel Shri Beni Prasad Verma gave a warm send-off to two Indian wrestlers, Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar Dutt, who will participate in the London Olympics, at a simple function held at Udyog Bhawan.

SAIL, Kobe Steel seal pact to bring environment-friendly steelmaking to India
India’s largest steelmaker Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) and Kobe Steel of Japan have signed a memorandum of agreement at Kobe’s headquarters in Tokyo for setting up a 0.5 million tonne per annum iron nugget making plant using Kobe’s patented ITmK3 technology at SAIL’s Alloy Steels Plant in Durgapur, West Bengal, India with an investment of Rs. 1,500 crore.

SKF inaugurates two more labs in Global Technical Centre India at Bangalore
SKF, the global technology and solutions provider of bearings, seals, lubrication systems, mechatronics and services, inaugurated Product Investigation Centre (PIC) and Mechatronics Laboratory at company’s Global Technical Centre (GTCI), Bangalore which was inaugurated last year with an investment of INR 500 million.
First meeting of CII National Steel Committee
The first meeting of the CII National Steel Committee in this financial year witnessed wide participation from all Indian steel majors, industrial members, policy-makers and other stakeholders.

GLOBAL TRENDS

  • SMS Concast and SMS Meer supply steel complex to Bahrain
    United Steel Company (Sulb) in the Kingdom of Bahrain awarded SMS Concast and SMS Meer the order to design and supply on a turnkey basis a steelworks for blooms/beam blanks and heavy sections. The minimill will be part of the new, fully integrated steel complex in Al Hidd, a town on a sand spit on the south-eastern extremety of Muharraq Island.
  • BCT® belt casting plant pre-assembled
    SMS Siemag is to supply a BCT® (Belt Casting Technology) plant to Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH. The first functional tests were already conducted at the end of November 2011. Ulrich Grethe, Member of the Management of Salzgitter Flachstahl, and his project team informed themselves of the progress of the plant during a visit to the SMS Siemag workshop in Hilchenbach. The plant is scheduled to go on stream at the Peine works in October 2012.
  • Green light for the new, state-of-the-art minimill complex for long products
    This order, placed in November 2011, represents the 79th minimill plant built by Danieli Group since 1964, and again strengthens Danieli's indisputable leadership in this field.
  • SMS group takes over majority share in Paul Wurth
    The SMS group took over 59.1 per cent of the shares in Paul Wurth S.A., Luxembourg, that were previously owned by ArcelorMittal (48.1%) and the Luxembourg fund Luxempart (11.0%). 40.8 per cent of the shares remain with the Luxembourg shareholders controlled by the state.
  • Casey Equipment partners with NLMK Indiana
    Casey Equipment Corporation has been commissioned by NLMK Indiana to sell their surplus 3 pump descale system.
  • Casey Equipment to collaborate with Fishman International
    Casey Equipment Corporation has partnered with Fishman International of Hong Kong to sell a 134” wide plate mill, a 68” Demag slab caster, a 150 tonne BOF facility, and a 180 tonne LMF.
  • Casey Equipment contracted to sell steel industry equipment
    Casey Equipment Corporation of Pittsburgh, PA will handle the sale of a surplus double-sided bar finishing line, as well as a #50 KTC straightener and a #30 KTC Sutton straightener, from an established steel industry leader.
  • Ruukki signs contract worth EUR 3 million
    Ruukki has signed contracts to deliver the envelope for the boiler house at a power plant in Kladno and steel frame structures for the soda boiler house at a pulp mill in Paskov. The contracts are worth a total of around EUR 3 million and are Ruukki’s first extensive deliveries to the Czech energy sector.
  • Metal-Analysis-Automation Q8 CORONADO for Foundries & Steel Plants
    Bruker Elemental offers innovative solutions for clients in all fields of metal production and metal processing industries. Q8 CORONADO Metal Analysis Automation is one such solution to reduce sample turnaround times and ensures consistent analytical quality for ferrous and non-ferrous applications.
  • June 2012 world crude steel output report
    According to worldsteel’s most recent production report, crude steel production for the 62 countries was 128 million tonnes (mt) in June 2012, a decrease of -0.1 per cent compared to June 2011.

FOCUS

Market set to attain ample economical import steel
The steel market in India is set to achieve ample import steel, being economical-thanks to the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with Korea and Japan. This major flow of steel is only adding more complexities for the country's steel industry.

Iron ore - More words less thoughts
The present world flavour surrounding the steel industry is more focusing on words, rather than on thoughts. Majority of the voices are carrying the statement that importing iron ore from offshore areas may make the country of India a net importer of iron ore. However, there should be a point of thought instead that importing the mineral will suffice up the conditions, especially low sea freight and increasing rail price.

COMPANY NEWS

New bar mill for SBQ at NISCO
Nanjing Iron & Steel Co., Ltd. (NISCO) signed a contract with the German company FRIEDRICH KOCKS GmbH & Co KG, Hilden for the supply and the commissioning of a 3-roll Reducing & Sizing Block 370/4 in heavy duty design [RSB++] for a new SBQ bar mill.

COMPANY REPORT

Outotec posts strong sales for H1 2012
Finnish mining and metal equipment provider Outotec has issued its financial results for the first half of 2012, reporting strong sales for the period.

MARKET & PRODUCT

Siemens launches Sinumerik 808D to round off the lower end of the Sinumerik family
The Siemens Drive Technologies Division is introducing a new entry-level CNC solution for standard lathes and milling machines in the form of the Sinumerik 808D. This compact, robust controller provides not only simple commissioning but also extraordinary user convenience. Self-explanatory and high-performance CNC functions open up a new standard of workpiece precision and shorter machining times. Working hand in hand with the Sinamics V60 drive system and the Simotics 1FL5 servomotor, the Sinumerik 808D is ideally suited as a CNC system for the lower end of the performance range. The new controller was first presented in June 2012 at the CIMES, China’s principle machine tool trade fair in Beijing.

ENVIRONMENT

Recent development of Energy Saving and Environmental Protection in the Steel Industry
Iron & Steel is the second major industry in terms of energy consumption (see figure 1). Energy constitutes a significant portion of the cost of steel production, ranging from 20% to 40% depending on process, local conditions, etc. Thus, improvements in energy efficiency result in reduced production costs and thereby improved competitiveness.

STEEL TECHNOLOGY

Stainless Steel Strip Processing Lines
Stainless steels are a group of very versatile corrosion resistant materials with widespread applications in many different industries. There are three main groups, namely 200, 300 and 400 series. The production of stainless steel was 32.1 million tonnes in 2011 and China has become the largest producer during the last years. Andritz is the world market leader in stainless steel processing lines, offering complete technical solutions from one single source. This includes terminal equipment, inline rolling mills, annealing furnace, pickling section, automation and electrical equipment. The trends for such lines are bigger production capacities and integration of process steps such as (inline) rolling.

AUTOMATION

Automation in Steel Industry
The term ‘Automation’ follows the usage of machines, control systems and information technologies to effectuate the rate of productivity in the fabrication of goods and delivery of services. Most effective ways to exercise automation is increasing productivity, and/or quality beyond that possible with the present human working levels comprehending economies of scale, and/or realise predictable quality levels.

SPECIAL & STAINLESS STEEL

Factors Affecting HIC in Linepipe Steels
This paper is a study based on several literature reviews which gives a brief understanding of the Hydrogen Induced Cracking (HIC) in line pipe steel. This paper introduces various factors where HIC can be affected due to various reasons. Increased supply of crude petroleum and severe environment conditions demand for in-depth study of HIC and the various factors affecting HIC in pipeline grades steels cannot be over ridden. The HIC is a prominent area of analysis where the pipe is prone to attack either at internal circumferential area due to crude petroleum or at external circumferential area due to severe environmental conditions.

STEELMAKING

Green steelmaking of tomorrow
A tonne of steel can be produced using far less input materials and energy than had been possible at any time in the past. Nevertheless, the combination of current technologies with tomorrow's solutions will one day allow the vision of a zero-emission steelworks to become reality.

SEMINAR & CONFERENCE

Moscow Trade Fair Trio: Metallurgy Litmash, Tube Russia, Aluminium / Non-Ferrous 2012 continues to set positive stimuli in the metalworking industry
There is general agreement among visitors and exhibitors at Metallurgy Litmash, Tube Russia and Aluminium / Non- Ferrous 2012: the event was an unqualified success.

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