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Company News, 2010-12-10, 01:00 PM

ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA begins construction of EAF meltshop in Alabama

Construction work is set to begin on a further central unit at ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA. “Our plans always included building a meltshop to produce stainless steel slabs. ThyssenKrupp is a reliable partner and stands by this pledge,” said the Executive Board Chairman of ThyssenKrupp AG, Dr. Ekkehard Schulz, at the official opening of the new processing plant in the southeastern USA. “We continue to believe in the need for an optimized and fully integrated stainless steel production site on the North American market, which is why we have stuck to the full scope of the project.” The engineering for the meltshop in Calvert and preparatory work had been continued in recent months anyway. The startup of the meltshop is scheduled for December 2012.

The complete meltshop now about to be built consists of a 160 ton electric arc furnace, 180 ton AOD converter (Argon Oxygen Decarburization) and a 72 inch (1,900 millimeter) continuous caster. The meltshop will have a capacity of 900,000 to 1 million tons per year. The stainless steel slabs it produces will be rolled into hot band on the hot strip mill of sister company ThyssenKrupp Steel USA. Of this hot band, around 340,000 tons per year will go to ThyssenKrupp Mexinox in San Luis Potosí (Mexico). Another roughly 525,000 tons per year will be transformed in the cold rolling mill into 175,000 tons of white hot-rolled (up to 10 millimeter thickness) and 350,000 tons of stainless cold-rolled (0.5 - 5 millimeter thickness). Until the meltshop starts production, ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA is being supplied with slabs from the group’s European mills. “Once our meltshop is in operation we will have a state-of-the-art, fully integrated production site for stainless steel flat products here in Calvert. We will then extend our product range to 72 inch widths for special grades as well,” said Dr. Ulrich Albrecht-Früh, CEO of ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA.

ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA has been working with ThyssenKrupp Steel USA on the construction of the new site for the production of carbon and stainless steel flat products in Alabama since 2007. The total capital investment for the integrated stainless plant in Calvert is around 1.4 billion US dollars. Stainless production began at the end of September with one cold rolling mill and other equipment. Foundation work for the hot-rolled annealing and pickling line began in January 2010. Startup is planned for fall 2011. The startup of a further cold rolling mill is scheduled for the same time.

ThyssenKrupp is already well positioned with stainless steel flat products on the NAFTA market. It has a market share of roughly 12 percent in the USA and over 15 percent in Canada, while in Mexico the company is market leader with over 70 percent. So far, most of the products have come from the ThyssenKrupp Mexinox plant and the European sites of the Stainless group. Marketing is carried out by an efficient sales company in Chicago, which is now also marketing the products made by ThyssenKrupp Stainless USA in Calvert.

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