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INTERPIPE has completely given up the open-hearth production

november 14, 2012
November 14 is the day when the last open-hearth furnace of the INTERPIPE Nizhnednepropvskiy Tube-Rolling Plant was decommissioned. Following the plans, announced earlier, INTERPIPE has completely stopped using this obsolete and environmentally harmful method of steel production.

Giving up the open-hearth method of production has become possible due to INTERPIPE’s launch of the new electric steel-melting mill. INTERPIPE STEEL, designed to replace open-hearth furnace furnaces and to provide the Company with steel billets for pipes and wheels, complies with the most stringent environmental and energy efficiency standards.
Thus the closure of the open-hearth furnace production will have a considerable positive impact on the environmental situation in Dnipropetrovsk. Launching the electric steel-melting technologies, INTERPIPE will cut down its emissions into the atmosphere by 2.5 times. Such change will be most actively noticed by residents of the left bank part of Dnipropetrovsk, since this is the place where the open-hearth furnace workshop is located.
In addition to that, the Company will reduce the power inputs quite significantly – by 2.2 times per ton of steel. This will effect a saving of approximately 60 million cubic meters of gas a year.
INTERPIPE has obtained economic justification to shut down the open-hearth furnace production after the launch and expansion of production volumes at the new electric steel-melting mill. Already in September 2012 the monthly volume of melting at INTERPIPE STEEL exceeded the similar average monthly result of the open-hearth furnace workshop in 2011. This result has allowed the Company to follow its plans, announced earlier, to give up the use of the open-hearth steel for production of pipes and wheels, and to switch over to the continuously cast billets of the new mill.
“The open-hearth furnace production is a specific epoch of the national industry. Its role in the development of metallurgy is enormous, and the work achievements of open-hearth furnace steelmakers will always remain an example for metallurgists, - Andrey Korotkov, INTERPIPE NTRP Chairman of the Board, has emphasized. – But the time of open-hearth furnaces is over. They are replaced by new steel-melting technologies – more productive, power efficient, and environmentally safe. We link the future of our mill and our employees with them”.
As it has been announced earlier, the step-by-step decommissioning of the open-hearth furnaces at INTERPIPE NTRP was commenced in 2011.
The Company has offered all employees of its open-hearth furnace workshop – approximately 500 people – several options for employment at other INTERPIPE NTRP workshops and departments, with the opportunity to keep their “hot record of service” valid. It has also developed and still carries out the program for requalification of the open-hearth furnace workshop employees, designed for their training and guidance on specialties, demanded at the mill.
For reference:
The open-hearth furnace production at INTERPIPE NTRP was launched in 1931. The workshop has produced more than 50 million tons of steel over 80 years of its history. The open-hearth furnace workshop provided INTERPIPE NTRP with steel billets for production of seamless pipes and railway wheels. In 2008 INTERPIPE commenced the construction of the new high-tech INTERPIPE STEEL complex, designed to replace the open-hearth furnace production and to raise Company’s self-sufficiency in steel billets.

After the shutdown of the INTERPIPE NTRP open-hearth furnace production Ukraine will still have 5 open-hearth furnace workshops more: at AZOVSTAL, Mariupol Metallurgical Plant after Illich, Alchevsk Metallurgical Plant, Arcelor Mittal Kryvyi Rih, and Zaporizhstal. According to the forecasts of the State Enterprise “Ukrpromvneshexpertiza”, the volume of the open-hearth furnace steel production in 2012 will be 7.5 million tons, or 23% of the total volume of steel production in Ukraine.

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