JV Foundry Planned in Russia for Valve Production

Cividale-Konar order high-tech melt shop for 27,500 tons/year of steel

An Italian-Russian consortium is building a new, high-tech foundry in the southern Urals city of Chelyabinsk, to produce up to 27,500 tons/year of castings in low- and high-alloy carbon steels and numerous stainless steel grades. The joint venture — BVK Ltd. — will cast ingots and billets, too, for forgings produced by CJSC Konar, Russia’s largest producer of valves, fittings, and other parts for oil-and-gas pipelines.

Konar’s partner in the project is Cividale Group, one of the largest metalcasting organizations in Europe. It operates 10 foundries in northeastern Italy, producing steel castings, gray and ductile iron castings, aluminum diecastings, steel forgings, and copper wire products.

The partners placed a contract for equipment and construction of a new melt shop with Danieli SpA, the Italian steelmaking engineering group. It will install a 20-metric ton electric furnace, ladle metallurgy furnace, vacuum degassing, and decarburizing equipment, and a variety of auxiliary equipment for producing multiple grades of steel. Information on other equipment contracts was not available.

Danieli indicates the new EAF will be based on its NANO design, a new series of smaller volume furnaces designed to operate with 100% scrap charges for a production rate of 10 metric tons/hour, with tap-to-tap time of 120 min. A 10-MVA transformer that Danieli also will supply will power the furnace. The melting process will be aided by Danieli’s Robox consumable slag-door lance, to manage steel chemistry and furnace energy consumption in a fully automated process.

The ladle furnace will have an inert roof to minimize air infiltration for optimal electrode consumption, to improve steel quality and yield. The LF will have its own 4.3-MVA transformer capable of achieving a 5°C/min heating rate. The VD/VOD station is designed as single tank and single cover able to achieve 0.67 mbar of minimum working pressure by mechanical dry pump.

The Danieli Automation division will integrate the melting and refining operation for Levels 1 (PLCs) and Level 2 (process control.)

BVK Ltd. has a development budget estimated at $70 million. Details of the partners’ shareholding agreement have not been released. The regional government reported the project would be completed in 2013.

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