Original Date: 08/26/1996
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Best Practice : Hot Strip Mill
Rebuilding the Hot Strip Mill at Weirton Steel Corporation (WSC) has been the cornerstone of the overall factory improvement program. With virtually all of the new equipment now in place, the Hot Strip Mill can easily be defined as a world-class facility.
Recognizing a need to improve their steelmaking capabilities in order to stay competitive, the employees of WSC made a commitment to take their steelmaking capabilities to world-class levels in Spring 1988. Using the Hot Strip Mill as the cornerstone of their factory improvement program, they invested more than $300 million in the rebuild of this equipment. The rebuilt Hot Strip Mill has improved quality, increased efficiency, and broadened the product capabilities of WSC.
Replacing four pusher furnaces with two new walking beam furnaces improved fuel usage by 59%. The new reversing roughing mill now operates at higher speeds and greater capacities due to the increase of power. With two 7,000 hp motors, thicknesses of up to 0.75-inch are an improvement over the old mill that had a capacity of 0.25- inch. Finished gauge sizes are now controlled to +2% over the length of the roll, and a hydraulic scale breaker maintains better surface conditions. Repowered stands; new gear boxes; the addition of a hydraulic automatic gauge control; and automated roll changing and roll bending allow the processing of the strips to occur at increased speeds. The new rotary crop shear, which replaced the old manual crop shear, provides a consistent, optimized use of the slabs with capacities up to 2 x 50 inches.
With these improvements to the Hot Strip Mill, WSC has increased its production capacities and has positioned itself to compete as a world-class, steel production facility.
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