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“Fireworks displays are more spectacular than the drama that is stealing the story of hot hot metal and cold steel is fascinating from start to finish especially when seen through experienced eyes of united states steel for our company. The story begins with a blast as rock explodes and the raw materials of steel are tossed from the earth the rock is taconite and the prize inside is crude iron ore. We get at it by grinding the rock to powder and separating the oar with powerful magnets then we form and heat the oil into marble sized pellets that will later be converted to iron from bituminous coal. We create code to fuel the iron making furnaces we crush the cold seal.
It in airtight ovens bake for 12 to 16 hours and remove it from the oven as solid carbon fuels the fuel and pellets come together in the black where we add just enough limestone to remove impurities from below a continuous blast of superheated air combust. The coals intensifying the heat and change raw materials into the molten. Iron sometimes more than 90000..
Tons of it a day in our largest class price where it reaches a temperature of 2700 degrees fahrenheit at regular intervals. We tap this blistering brute into giant submarine ladles that ride on rails to the basic. Oxygen. Char.
Where iron will be turned into steel in this fast. Paced sequence up to 250 tons of steel can be made to order in less than 45 minutes. We begin the steelmaking process by dumping recycled steel scrap into the basic oxygen furnace and adding hot iron sparks steal the show when high purity oxygen is blown into the mix at supersonic speeds and molten iron becomes molten steel now we re ready to create the custom blends that make steel the most widely used metal on the planet in fact we produce over 1500..
Different chemistry s to meet customer demand for cutting edge value added steel look for another show of sparks as we tap molten steel from the bottle into a ladle then for most of our steels. It s on to the vacuum degassing where they are made highly formable. The focus then shifts to forming and finishing. Which determine even more of the steel s characteristics.
The first step in this sequence is to position the ladle above a massive tundish or funnel that feeds a continuous caster containing molds that shape the steel the molten steel now at 3000 degrees fahrenheit is channeled from ladle to tundish to caster where it cools to a red hot solid the shape of the mold determines. The shape of the semi finished products that come out of the caster and since most us steel plants make sheet products most of our casters output slabs typically eight to nine inches thick and three to five feet wide as they exit. The caster slabs are cut into sections up to 40 feet long and stepped to await further processing..
Then it s on to the hot strip mill. This is what we begin transforming steel slab into steel sheet slabs are reheated to 2400 degrees fahrenheit. And descale before running through a series of roughing stands that make them thinner and longer then they cycle through finishing stands. Where they are rolled even thinner finally they are cooled and rolled into coils that may be thousands of feet long.
But only fractions of an inch thick a far cry from the chunky rectangle that came out of the caster and the entire process is untouched by human hands controlled instead by operators using state of the art automated equipment in pulpits that overlook the action next we move to the pickle line. Where toils move through an acid bath that cleans the surface. Some of the emerging coils are shipped directly to customers as hot fans others are destined for applications that require special finishing beginning with cold rolling to make them even thinner at that point coils may be shipped or go on to one or more additional finishing processes coating to make the steel resistant to corrosion tinning to further reduce the gauge and add the tin coat..
We commonly see on canned goods annealing to make steel that is easier to bend and form and tempering that uses special rollers to add hardness and create surface textures and other special finishes in fact many of our products leave the finishing facilities as the industry s newest superstars lighter stronger highly engineered formable steels that were unheard of just a few short years ago. No wonder the store of steelmaking stays. So fresh with innovations that guarantee something new to see in each showing with product placements in our homes and high rises on our highways. And in every other part of our daily lives and with a cast of thousands who continue to improve and perfect every step of the steelmaking process from shaped pellet to shift coil and beyond.
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“A narrated description of the steelmaking process.”,
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