December 25, 2020

Severstal’s new blast furnace No. 3 enters hot testing phase

PAO Severstal, one of the world's largest vertically integrated steel and mining companies, has put blast furnace No. 3 (BF-3) at the Cherepovets Steel Mill (part of Severstal’s Russian steel division) onto hot test mode. The new furnace has been named “Cherepovchanka,” its name having been chosen by local residents.

BF-3 has the capacity to produce more than three million tons of pig iron per year. The unit is the second-largest at the Cherepovets steel mill in terms of production volumes of cast iron, after Severyanka, the largest blast furnace in Europe.

Alexander Shevelev, CEO of Severstal, commented:

"Building a new blast furnace at the Cherepovets steel mill has been our greatest investment project of the decade, with a total investment of over 24 billion rubles. Blast furnace No. 3 will increase our cast iron and steel output and guarantee stable operations of the Cherepovets Steel Mill during the first stage of further modernization works. In today’s volatile market, we are reliant on our own raw materials base. The combination of advanced engineering solutions used at blast furnace No. 3 will allow for a varied composition of raw materials loaded into the furnace, providing additional flexibility. Ultimately, this will help strengthen our cost leadership for liquid steel and increase our overall competitiveness, making Severstal an even more reliable partner for our clients. We maintain our focus on mitigating our environmental impact, and the use of the latest technologies at blast furnace No. 3, operated in line with best international practice, will contribute towards improved environmental production parameters.”

Blast furnace No. 3 is unique to Russia’s steel industry, with its profile allowing for 80% of the metal charge to be made up of iron ore pellets. Advanced backfill and temperature control systems at the top of the furnace guarantee flexibility in adjusting the furnace’s processing modes, enabling reduced coke consumption in cast iron smelting.

The furnace’s particularly strong metal casing, combined with refractory materials and new generation cooling systems, has increased the facility’s working life before the need for capital repairs from 10-20 to 25 years. The design features shaftless air heaters, which allow for lower coke consumption, increasing the blast temperature. A modern coneless charging device, equipped with monitoring and control systems, will increase productivity while reducing fuel consumption and lowering emissions.

Most of the technological operations at BF-3 are automated, with a significant number of the IT developments owned by Severstal employees.

The key environmental advantage of blast furnace No. 3 is its aspiration system, which removes dust from the air and workplaces. The residual dust content of the air after filtering is below 8 mg / m3, which corresponds to the level of the cleanest metallurgical enterprises in the world. The efficiency of blast furnace gas purification is 99.99%. BF-3’s air heaters also guarantee lower CO content.

Air has been sampled for dust content throughout the production chain - from the transportation site, to the transfer of charge and fuel prior to feeding to the blast furnace, to the casthouse with closed holes for releasing cast iron and overflow sites. The specific emissions from blast furnace No. 3 is 53% lower than the total specific emission of blast furnaces No. 1 and 2 combined.

Further information

Construction of blast furnace No. 3 commenced in October 2018. The general contractor for the construction of the Central unit of the unit was the Domnaremont Center (part of Severstal).

Construction of the bunker overpass, stock house and casthouses was carried out by LLC Uraldomnaremont (Ekaterinburg). The energy and electricity supply facilities will be built by SK yusp LLC (Moscow). The construction of the central exhaust and central supply stations, as well as their infrastructure, was completed by JSC "SMK "Chermetekologiya" (Cherepovets).

The general designer was OOO Severstal Project.