Steel Production Enhanced through Carbon Injection into EAF

Steel is essential to our way of life. It is therefore important that leading producers in the Metals industries, adopt innovative methods for production, that maximize quality, require less maintenance on equipment, as well as being more eco-friendly.

Application: Steel, Electric Arc Furnaces feeding, Turkey

Schenck Process recently has worked with a customer to follow exactly these principles, in an Electric Arc Furnaces production facility. Schenck Process was requested to advise on a series of Electric Arc Furnaces where the client is feeding Scrap, Pig Iron, Hot Briquetted Iron (HBI), and Direct Reduced Iron (DRI). The client had a number of areas where weighing could be improved. The Schenck Process EMEA Metals team offered solutions to the client’s melt shop for crane weighing, scrap weighing bins, tundish and ladle weighing, also an upgrade to their Carbon Injection System to take advantage of the improvements that the Schenck Process System offers.

Schenck Process Solutions

The client quickly decided to go ahead with upgrading their first Carbon Injection system to deliver granular <3mm carbon from a small silo to the lance at the furnace. The solution uses the Schenck Process’s ‘ProStream’ Pneumatic Injection technology. Schenck Process has been supplying improved carbon and lime systems for many years in the Americas, but Europe has slower to adopt these improvements. In the USA there are around 100 systems installed by Schenck Process and in Brazil a further 20.

Why Schenck Process

The ProStream system will give the client better control than traditional pneumatic methods, where the systems are less accurate and use higher material velocities. Schenck Process systems generate less dust and wear, tighter material delivery, consistent product temperatures, improved foam, viscosities, and cycles – leading to higher quality and lower cost steel production.

The Benefits of Carbon Injection for Steel

The injection of carbon is to produce heat, often combined with an oxygen lance or side block injection. It helps reduce the cost of electrical energy delivered through the electrodes, as well as the amount of energy consumed. 

The action also causes the slag to foam, this increases the surface contact area between the electrodes and the metal, for higher production. Furthermore, it increases the insulation blanket on top of the molten metal, which protects the refractory lining of the furnaces and increases quality and yield. Some users have a second system to add Lime to their furnaces.

In Europe, these systems are fairly new to the Steel industry. There are several low-cost simple alternative options that deliver the material, but not in a controlled manner – for quality output. They also don’t deliver a consistent foamed slag, which would help enable the higher production. Cheaper alternatives commonly require a lot more maintenance, thereby increasing downtime and engineering costs.

Not letting the CoViD-19 crisis get in the way of supporting their customer, the Schenck Process EMEA Metals team completed the technical and commercial negotiations via Skype calls. Schenck Process absolutely stuck to their strapline of ‘We Make Processes Work’ and look forward to engineering this solution over the coming weeks.

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