MMK completes reconstruction of mill 2500
The updated mill 2500 is equipped with the most modern means of automation, control and tracking of the rolling process. The reverse water supply cycle has been altered, and an additional water supply cycle has been built for furnaces and main units of the roughing and finishing groups. Some of the old production facilities were dismantled and new modern bays were built instead.
The reconstruction of mill 2500 in Sheet Rolling Shop No. 4 will enable the Company to expand the size and brand range of the mill, to produce new steel tube grades of strength class K52-K60, Magstrong S550MC, S600MC, S700MC, AGRO22, AGRO23, and to significantly improve the quality of its products and increase the unit’s production capacity 5.2 million tonnes of rolled metal per year.
Governor of the Chelyabinsk region Alexey Texler, Chairman of the Board of Directors of MMK Viktor Rashnikov and MMK CEO Pavel Shilyaev took part in the ceremonial launch of the unit.
"It has become a great tradition to open new production facilities on the eve of our industry's national holiday, the Day of the Metallurgist," said Chairman of the Board of Directors of MMK Viktor Rashnikov.
"Magnitogorsk has survived through many different times. But the plant always emerged honourably from these difficult situations and never stopped developing and moving forward. The completed reconstruction of the hot rolling mill 2500 is no exception. The mill has been in operation at the plant since 1960, and can be described as a veteran of production. Its reconstruction will give the Company a number of additional advantages. Now it is an updated veteran, a unique high-performance unit with an increased production volume of up to 5.2 million tonnes per year and a more complex high-quality product range. Such facilities will allow the Company and all MMK Group companies to work more reliably and in a more timely manner."
The continuous thick sheet hot rolling mill 2500 was first launched in December 1960, and since then various sections of the mill have been reconstructed on several occasions. The large-scale reconstruction of existing facilities began in 2007. The general contractor for construction was the joint-stock company Prokatmontazh. The manufacturer of the main technological equipment for mill 2500 is the Novokramatorsky Machine-Building Plant (NKMZ, Ukraine). In February 2018, MMK also signed a contract with SMS group GmbH for the supply of equipment for the reconstruction of the finishing group of mill crates.
In July 2010, the cross-cutting unit No. 3 was put into operation at mill 2500, designed for cutting strips of a specified length with a cut edge to produce sheets stacked in bundles.
In 2012-2013, MMK decomissioned and dismantled six heating furnaces and replaced them with three new high-performance heating furnaces made by the Italian company Tenova. These furnaces featured a larger hearth width, which can accommodate slabs up to ten metres long. The capacity of the furnace will be 370 tonnes of metal per hour (previously it produced around 100 tonnes, it currently produces 280 tonnes). Modern heating technology guarantees reduced scale formation. In addition, the new furnaces are more economical as compared to the previous ones, as their operation requires half as much natural gas and coke oven gas. The technological line consisting of the roughing and finishing groups of crates, as well as all transport rollers, winders, and the line for transporting and cleaning rolls were also updated.
In 2019, two new universal reversible stands with vertical and horizontal rolls were commissioned at the draft group of hot rolling mill 2500. They mostly work in tandem, but each crate can also work independently, each with its own rolling mode. New coiling machines No.7-8 are also being launched, which can wind coils of up to 40 tonnes from a slab up to 10 metres long, as well as conveyors for moving coils to the warehouse for hot-rolled coils at Sheet Rolling Shop No.4. In September of this year, another conveyor with a cart will be built to transfer coils to Sheet Rolling Shop No.5. With its commissioning, the coils will be rolled up and sent to warehouses and consumers in a horizontal position, which will prevent further damage during transportation.
The launch of the new H65 shears and the installation of the hydro scale (for hydraulic descaling) are planned for July. Also, as part of the reconstruction of the finishing group of crates, a new F0 crate (delivered under the earlier contract with NKMZ) and four new crates (under the contract with SMS group) will be installed in place of the old 7-10 crates, as well as a new discharge roller with an upgraded laminar strip cooling system and the new coiling machine No.6. As part of the reconstruction of the finishing group, a Coilbox (manufactured by NKMZ) was also installed for the first time. This is an intermediate rewinding device that will turn the roll which is returning from the black group of crates at a high speed, immediately unwinding it at a lower speed and setting the other end into the finishing group of crates. This technology will allow us to maintain the rolling temperature, eliminate the temperature spike and reduce the energy required for rolling. By the end of July this year, the cross-cutting unit No. 1, built in June, is due to be put into the planned operation mode. This will eliminate claims for non-flatness and expand the Company’s product assortment.