Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works (MMK) plans to begin the reconstruction of blast furnace No. 2 in 2020, in line with its modernization plans. MMK plans to radically modernize the unit, significantly reducing its environmental impact.
The historically significant blast furnace No. 2 was commissioned in the summer of 1932, a few months after the launch of the plant. Currently, it produces around 3,800 tons of pig iron per day.
As part of the modernization process, MMK plans to dismantle and completely replace all parts of the old furnace, as well as to replace the cooling system. Equipment for the new cooling system will be supplied by the Luxembourg company Paul Wurth, selected following the results of a tender, which required the cooling systems presented to have horizontal cooling elements. Following its reconstruction, the new furnace will have non-lintel design. Paul Wurth will supply horizontal box coolers, highly-heat-conductive graphite blast-furnace brickwork and ramming compound. The package also includes a complete set of equipment for a stand-alone hydraulic power unit with heat exchangers and an accompanying closed-loop cooling system for chemically purified water. The installation process will be supervised on-site both during the pre-installation period and during the period between installation and the start-date of the furnace’s operation.
The casting beds will also be redesigned. The main technological equipment required for the production of pig iron and slag will be replaced by modern hydraulic equipment manufactured by Dneprohydromach. Similar equipment has already been installed on four MMK blast furnaces. Changes will affect the main transportation flumes, which will be equipped with convective cooling and will increase in size, facilitating the separation of pig iron from slag. The lining of transportation flumes will be made from refractory concrete. In addition, the flumes will also be equipped with an aspiration system air-duct. Gas-purifying equipment will also be supplied by Dneprohydromach in the form of aspiration systems for casting beds. As a result of this aspiration installation, which has a suction capacity of 850,000 cubic meters per hour, the emission of pollutants into the atmosphere will be significantly reduced, improving working conditions for the metallurgists. At the moment, the site designated for the construction of the aspiration casting bed is being prepared. The construction of the new blast furnace will have no effect on MMK’s overall steel production or on the quantity of finalized products as its reduced blast furnace production capacity will be compensated by increasing the capacity of the electric-furnace workshop.
MMK’s blast furnace No. 2 was commissioned in June 1932. It was named Komsomolka to commemorate the achievement of hundreds of Komsomol members who worked on the construction of the plant. Since then, the blast furnace has been repeatedly updated – most recently in 2000, when it was rebuilt almost from scratch. The volume of the current blast furnace is 1,380 cubic meters. In 2010, a bell-less top charging mechanism provided by Paul Wurth was installed on blast furnace No. 2. (MMK/Ukrainian metal)
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