IJmuiden, April 01, 2020

Modernization of hot strip mill edger completed

Tata Steel IJmuiden meets future requirements with maintenance-friendly edger main drive

SMS group has successfully modernized the edger main drive of the 88-inch hot wide-strip mill No. 2 at Tata Steel IJmuiden in the Netherlands. The new edger drive is more maintenance-friendly and allows the transmission of much higher torques.

In sheet and strip production, there has been a trend for some years to produce a higher proportion of high-strength grades and new steel grades. For manufacturers this means having to adapt their equipment to these demands and to ensure high equipment availability. In a rolling mill, the mechanical gear components in the drive train are particularly affected.

Modernization of 35-year old edger main drive
The edger before revamp.

Against this background, Tata Steel IJmuiden placed an order with SMS group in summer 2018, covering the modernization of the edger main drive at the first roughing stand of the 88-inch hot wide-strip mill No. 2. The edger was originally supplied by SMS group and has been operating for almost 35 years. The aim of the modernization was to replace the existing single-piece edger gearbox with a maintenance-friendly and easy-to-disassemble gearbox of the latest two-piece design. In addition, the core components should be optimized according to the current requirements of the edger and thus ensure the economic operation of the edger in the future.

Advanced gear design for higher torques

The essential components of the edger gear unit are the gears. SMS group advanced the gear material and design permitting new gears with higher capacity and higher safety factors to be used for existing systems within a given installation space. The gears were optimized with “Advanced Gear Design“. This means that in the same space much higher torques can be transmitted safely. Tata Steel Ijmuiden benefits from this development thanks to the modernization.

The complete edger gearbox was pre-assembled in the Hilchenbach workshop.

As part of the contract SMS group renewed the entire edger main drive consisting of motor couplings, two-part edger gearbox, universal joint shafts and roll-side wobblers. The edger gearbox consists of two halves, each weighing around 90 tons.

Further parts of the supply scope included the complete disassembly of the existing edger main drive and complete assembly of the new one. The scope was completed by replacing the cabling as part of the electrical installation and by adjusting the lubrication and hydraulic lines of the gearbox and the ventilation ducts for engine ventilation.

From manufacturing and pre-assembly to successful start-up

The core components of the main gearbox, including the gearbox housing, were completely manufactured, pre-assembled, tested and approved by the customer in the Hilchenbach workshop of SMS group.

The main revamp took place as planned during the regular summer shutdown in 2019. On August 25, 2019, the modernized edger was successfully put into operation. Already one month later, on September 26, the final acceptance was granted.

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The project teams of Tata Steel IJmuiden and SMS group after successful acceptance in the Hilchenbach workshop.
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Roughing stand with edger after revamp (exit side view).