Blast furnace A in Salzgitter is being relined. (Photo: Salzgitter AG)
With the start of the relining of blast furnace A, Salzgitter AG is taking a relevant operational step to guarantee a raw iron basis during the step-by-step transformation phase towards carbon-reduced steel production by 2033.
In a renovation phase lasting around 100 days, blast furnace A will receive a general overhaul, or a relining, as it is referred to in the steel industry. Among other things, the refractory lining will be redone and the complex process and control technology will be modernised. The important first step was to remove the “sow”, meaning letting the remaining molten raw iron flow out of the blast furnace hearth.
For this complicated maintenance task, an amount of more than 100 million euros was made available. An important partner is the company Pirson Montage AG. The supply of precursor material to the internal processing companies and affiliates during the construction phase is secure due to the pre-production of slabs.
Ulrich Grethe, Chairman of the Management Board of Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH, comments as follows on the relining: “This investment is a strong signal that even during the transformation phase until 2033, we will remain a reliable partner for our customers. With SALCOS® - Salzgitter Low CO2 Steelmaking, we are pioneers of the industrial transformation. Following defined procedures with investments into existing operations while at the same time realising the new process route represent our unique selling point in the steel industry.”
Gerd Baresch, Managing Director Technology of Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH, adds: “We are leaving the blast furnace route step by step and have already started installing the process route for new aggregates like direct reduction systems and electric arc furnaces. For example, we will shut down one of our blast furnaces as early as 2026. With this approach as part of SALCOS®, we ensure that the steel site in Salzgitter and its jobs will be fit for the future.”
Blast furnace A has been active since 1977 and has been relined several times. It has a yearly capacity of approx. 2 million tons of raw iron.