View of existing Finex 1.5 M plant, Pohang, Korea (left: melter gasifier tower, right: fluidized bed reactor tower)
Siemens VAI Metals Technologies received an order from Posco Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. (Posco E&C), a subsidiary company of the Korean steel producer Pohang Iron and Steel Co. Ltd. (Posco), for engineering and the supply of proprietary equipment for a Finex 2.0M plant.
This ironmaking facility, which will be built at Posco's Pohang steelworks, will produce some 2 million tons of hot metal on the basis of directly charged low-cost iron ore fines and predominantly noncoking coal. The order value for Siemens is a medium two-digit-million euro figure. Upon completion of the new Finex plant scheduled for mid-2013, a total of approximately 4 million tons of hot metal will be produced per year using the Finex process at Posco.
Lower investment and operational costs compared to a conventional blast furnace plant configuration with coking and sintering plants were decisive reasons for Posco's decision to again invest in Finex technology. The project scope for Siemens VAI includes the supply of basic and detail engineering for the main plant area that comprises the melter gasifier, the fluidized-bed reactor system and the auxiliary facilities of the hot-compacting iron (HCI) plant. Advisory services for erection and commissioning are part of the project scope.
The combined efforts of Posco and Siemens VAI will ensure that the new Finex 2.0M plant will feature an optimized and highly compact design with consideration to the limited space availability at the Pohang steelworks.
Compared to the company's two existing Finex plants, the number of fluidized bed reactors will be reduced from four to three. This and the installation of new technological packages such as a pneumatic-charging system will reduce the specific investment costs for the new Finex plant by about 15%. Hot metal from all three Finex plants will be processed to high-quality steel in Posco's LD (BOF) steel mills. Finex export gas is used for the generation of electrical energy in a Posco-owned combined-cycle power plants.
In the Finex process iron-ore fines are first reduced to DRI in a series of fluidized-bed reactors by means of a coal-based reduction gas. After exiting the final reactor, the DRI fines are hotcompacted, transferred to a charging bin above the Finex melter gasifier, and then charged by gravity into the melter gasifier where melting takes place. The tapped product, liquid hot metal, is equivalent in quality to the hot metal produced in a blast furnace. Oxygen injected into the melter gasifier gasifies the charged coal, generating the reducing gas. The coal also serves as the energy source for the melting of HCI to hot metal. Finex export gas is a valuable by-product that can be used for a variety of industrial applications such as power generation, heating applications or for additional DRI/HBI (hot-briquetted iron) production.
The Finex process was jointly developed by Posco and Siemens VAI. A Finex plant with an annual production capacity of 600,000 t/a was first installed at Posco Pohang Works and started up in 2003. On the basis of the excellent operational results, Posco then invested in a Finex 1.5M plant with an output of 1.5 million t/a. Commissioning took place in 2007. Posco's decision to build a third Finex plant underlines the company's commitment to applying innovative and cost-saving technology to produce high-quality hot metal. Posco was named the world's most competitive steelmaker for the second straight year by World Steel Dynamics in June 2011.
The Siemens Industry Sector (Erlangen, Germany) is the worldwide leading supplier of environmentally friendly production, transportation and building technologies. With integrated automation technologies and comprehensive industry-specific solutions, Siemens increases the productivity, efficiency and flexibility of its customers in the fields of industry and infrastructure. In fiscal 2010, which ended on September 30, 2010, revenue from continuing operations of the Industry Sector (excluding Osram) totaled around €30.2 billion. At the end of September 2010, Siemens Industry Sector had around 164,000 employees worldwide without consideration of Osram. Further information is available on the Internet at: www.siemens.com/industry.
The Siemens Industry Solutions Division (Erlangen, Germany) is one of the world's leading solution and service providers for industrial and infrastructure facilities comprising the business activities of Siemens VAI Metals Technologies, Water Technologies and Industrial Technologies. Activities include engineering and installation, operation and service for the entire life cycle. A wide-ranging portfolio of environmental solutions helps industrial companies to use energy, water and equipment efficiently, reduce emissions and comply with environmental guidelines. With around 29,000 employees worldwide (September 30), Siemens Industry Solutions posted sales of €6.0 billion in fiscal year 2010. www.siemens.com/industry-solutions
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