Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works (MMK) invested around 500 million rubles into the continued implementation of initiatives aimed at improving the energy efficiency of its production processes in 2018.
One of the key tools of energy efficiency improvement is through the elaboration and implementation of relevant innovation proposals. Back in 2016, an Idea Management unit including an Energy Management Platform (EMP) was introduced. This facilitated MMK’s efforts to improve energy-efficiency, significantly increasing the number of ideas submitted and the percentage implemented. Over the course of the past year, a total of 680 ideas were submitted though the EMP, 139 of which were implemented with an anticipated annual cost of 73.25 million rubles.
Initially, the platform only dealt with issues of energy-efficiency, but its effectiveness encouraged a decision in 2017 for the adoption of a wider area of preoccupation and for it to cover additional topics. These included ideas towards a more economic use of materials and technical resources, as well as the areas of ecology, labor protection, industrial health and safety, and more. In 2018, information from pre-existing platforms was transferred to the EMP, resulting in the creation of an archive of previously submitted and implemented proposals currently comprising over 19,000. In addition, in 2017 and 2018, an initiative was launched to introduce an Idea Management unit in all MMK Group companies. Currently, information is being transferred to the EMP from MMK Metalurji (Turkey).
Following the successes of the Idea Management unit, MMK employees now have the possibility of suggesting their own ideas and submitting them through an electronic form. The reliability of decision-making on capital-intensive energy-efficient projects, including those financed by baby-capex schemes and energy service contracts, has significantly increased. In 2018, a total of 17 projects with a total anticipated cost of 350 million rubles were implemented under the baby-capex scheme. These included a contract for the installation of frequency converters for the MMK central power plant’s raw water pumps, implemented under the energy service scheme. In 2018, the total cost of the projects put in place under the energy service scheme, including those before 2018, amounted to 97.9 million rubles.
The development of the Energy Management Platform made it possible to automate many operations that were previously performed manually. Not only can the author of an innovation proposal submit an idea via an electronic form, but it is also possible to track the proposal’s progress on a mobile device, and to make amendments to it if necessary. This became possible as a result of the integration of the EMP into MMK’s Evolution mobile app. MMK is also testing a function which would enable the author of a submitted innovation proposal to charge a fee in return for the idea being used or implemented.
In cases where it is hard to evaluate the result of the implementation of a particularly original project, a special review algorithm is applied. These projects are also overseen by R&D, which in turn is overseen by the Energy Management Platform. (MMK/Ukrainian metal)