Hilchenbach, November 16, 2018

Large-scale expansion of heavy-plate rolling mill

For the modernization of its heavy-plate rolling mill, NLMK DanSteel relies on the know-how of SMS group.

NLMK DanSteel A/S has contracted SMS group to implement a large-scale expansion and modernization of its Frederiksvaerk heavy-plate rolling mill. The measures will enable NLMK DanSteel to further expand its product portfolio in terms of grades and dimensions. For the customer’s 4.2 meter heavyplate rolling mill, SMS group will supply a new plate cooling section with pertaining water management system, install a new thick-plate cooling bed, update the leveling model of the hot plate leveler, and modernize the existing cold plate leveler. The scope of supplies will further include the complete electrical and automation systems. SMS will integrate new functions in the existing automation system and will install the mechanical equipment and the electrical system. In 2012, SMS group supplied to NLMK DanSteel a new heavy-plate mill stand and a hot plate leveler, among others.

We had very positive experience at that time, with respect to both plant technology and implementation of the partly highly complex modifications. And that was one of the reasons why we again selected SMS group for the next step.” Allan Thomasen, Technical Manager of NLMK DanSteel
New technology increases throughput

The new plate cooling system will be of laminar design and able to cool plates in the thickness range from 10 to 260 millimeters. This new system will enable NLMK DanSteel to produce high-strength plates for pipelines, the ship building industry or offshore wind parks. For thermomechanical rolling and the production of thick plates, NLMK DanSteel will be able to use the cooling system in the intervals between the individual rolling phases. The X-Pact® cooling model provides for up to three cooling phases per plate. This intermediate cooling option will cut the holding times between the rolling phases and permit an increase in throughput.

A new cooling bed for thick plates will be installed downstream the laminar cooling system and the already existing hot plate leveler. This cooling bed will be used for plates being up to 260 millimeters thick and weighing 40 tons, but will be designed for future plate weights of up to 62 tons. Transportation to the cooling bed will be accomplished the fully automatic way. For the purpose of leveling high-strength plates, the experts of SMS group will adapt the leveling model of the hot plate leveler to the expanded product range.

The existing cold plate leveler will also be comprehensively modernized. In addition to the mechanical adjustment system, it will be equipped with a hydraulic main adjustment permitting the leveling gap to be perfectly set and controlled under load. The existing drive will be replaced by a new single- roll drive. Further, SMS group will install a new automation system with leveling model and user interface (HMI).

In preparation of the revamp planning, a 3D laser measurement was performed. Based on the results thereof, suitable installation strategies and optimized erection schedules were developed to keep downtimes as short as possible. The revamp of the rolling mill will be carried out in several steps. It will start in September 2018 already with the modernization of the cold plate leveler. The resulting downtime will also be used to perform preliminary work in the areas of mill stand and cooling system and for the thick-plate cooling bed. Thereafter, modules will be pre-assembled and wired on site during ongoing production to be able to install and commission them within short standstill periods.