TECHNOLOGY
EMPOWER :2014-15

Displaying the prowess of our solutions capability in a true blue steel plant

ElectroMech solutions

ElectroMech responded to BMM Ispat's challenge with some unique ideas. Detailed analysis, design iterations and trials resulted in an integrated solution that has proved to be fool-proof, achieving the intended task swiftly.

A total of 13 cranes were designed to handle the material through various processes right from the steel melting shop to the placement of bars and rods on railway carriages. Steel melting shop In the steel melting shop (SMS) where billets are formed, a total of 4 cranes with rotating trolleys assist in the manufacturing and storage of the billets. Two cranes of 20MT each covering a span of 32.8m and another two 20MT cranes with 27.2m span cover the manufacturing and storage of the billets before they are sent for further processing. Since these cranes are part of a process and in constant use, these are designed for class 4 duty. The ambient temperature in the steel melting shop is approximately 600 Celsius, requiring all the components of the crane to be able to withstand such high temperatures. Hence, a slewing wheel type of arrangement was selected to be able to work in this area. An air-conditioned cabin is also provided for the operator.

Steel melting shop

In the steel melting shop (SMS) where billets are formed, a total of 4 cranes with rotating trolleys assist in the manufacturing and storage of the billets. Two cranes of 20MT each covering a span of 32.8m and another two 20MT cranes with 27.2m span cover the manufacturing and storage of the billets before they are sent for further processing. Since these cranes are part of a process and in constant use, these are designed for class 4 duty. The ambient temperature in the steel melting shop is approximately 0 60 Celsius, requiring all the components of the crane to be able to withstand such high temperatures. Hence, a slewing wheel type of arrangement was selected to be able to work in this area. An air-conditioned cabin is also provided for the operator.

Furnace and rolling mills

The furnace is served by a 10MT crane with 22m span, which also has a rigorous initial application of installing the furnace and rollers. Once the installation of the furnace is completed, the crane will be used for replacing the rollers and for regular maintenance applications. Once the billets are transferred to the furnace for heat treatment purpose, they pass through idle rollers where they are re-heated. Two cranes serve this area; one crane of capacity 25/5MT with 28m span and another of 20/5MT capacity and 34m span. Since the dies have to be changed depending on the product to be manufactured, the 25/5MT crane is in constant use. All these cranes are designed for class 3 duty.

Quenching and cooling

Rolling is followed by the quenching and cooling of rolled items. The material to be handled in this stage is in the form of bundles and the same continues till the despatch of the final product. Here, two 15MT, 28m span, class 3, double girder cranes are installed to assist the installation of the machinery during plant set up stage and later on will be used to handle the material being processed at this bay.

Despatch

Once the processing of the material is complete, it moves towards the despatch bay. The despatch bay is 380m in length and is entirely covered by 3 nos. 12.5MT, 34m span, class 3 duty cranes. Like in the case of the steel melting shop cranes, these cranes also have 360° rotating crabs, however, the mechanism used here is a slewing bearing. This mechanism was narrowed down upon after many discussions between the design team of ElectroMech and BMM team. There were two types of rotating mechanisms that were finalised. One that operates with the help of gears and the other by using rails and wheels. The first one is used for continuous operations and hence the maintenance had to be kept to the lowest possible. The latter crane was operated under normal working conditions hence easy accessibility and simple mechanisms had to be provided. Since the despatch bay is in continuous operation, the cranes installed here are used rigorously for loading of finished components. The other two cranes will be used to load and unload materials onto despatch vehicles into the respective parking areas.

The client team and ElectroMech team worked closely to develop a suitable system and commission it in the stipulated time span. BMM Ispat management appreciated the efforts and complimented ElectroMech team for its customer-centric approach.

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25/5MT, 28m span double girder crane installed in the rolling mill unit

Total no of cranes: 13

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BMM Ispat Ltd. is an INR 20 billion company, part of the renowned BMM group. Their plant at Danapur, Hospet, Karnataka is a true blue steel plant manufacturing high-quality steel products. As a part of a new brownfield project, the company is planning to expand the existing capacity, for which ElectroMech is supplying 13 cranes in the first phase. This facility is being constructed to expand the product range and to include a semi-automatic process, which will increase production. BMM Ispat approached ElectroMech during the summer of 2012 and after a thorough evaluation of our proposal, placed an order for 13 cranes to be used at various stages of their manufacturing process. Through a detailed understanding of their workflow and several interactions between both the teams, cranes of most efficient design, effectively matching the application requirements were selected.

The processes and challenges

BMM Ispats plant is spread over a vast area of 50 acres (approx. 200,000sq.m.) and the entire manufacturing process is divided into four stages.

Steel melting shop

The first area is called the steel melting shop, which handles all the operations from the melting of raw material to forming of billets of desired shape and size.Here the metal is processed in the molten form and handled by ladles. The formed billets are to be rotated in 90 and are to be transferred on the idle rollers to take them to two different storage locations.

Furnace and rolling mills

The second phase of the entire process consists of a furnace and rolling mills and includes handling of long metal billets of an average length of 12m each. The process is initiated by passing the billets on to idle rollers installed besides the furnace. The rolling facility is spread over 200m length and the preheated billets are passed through various horizontal and vertical rolling mills to give them the desired shape. The dies of the presses are required to be changed frequently to suit the particular product to be rolled, which includes rolled angles, TMT bars, metal rods and I-beams.

Quenching and cooling

The third phase is the quenching and cooling process. This is a well-equipped and technologically advanced process cycle performed using a plant manufactured by siemens, Italy. The products are rapidly cooled, which produces a harder material and prevents low temperature processes such as phase transformations in the material. Further cooling is then done and the product is then prepared to undergo the final finishing process.

Despatch area

The fourth and final phase includes the despatch of the finished products. The despatch yard is spread over 380m long and 50m wide area. This consists of parking bays for trucks and a railway track for loading on railway carriages. The despatch area has to store and handle long rods and beams. Rotating crabs are used to control the angle of long metal bars and other similar components in the despatch bay. BMM Ispat was looking for a competent partner who could understand the challenges and design a complete material handling system to integrate the various processes. The objective was to ensure safe, quick and precise handling and appropriate manoeuvring during loading at the despatch bay.