3D vision of Böhler Edelstahlwerke stainless melt shop, Kapfenberg, Austria. SMS group
3D rendering of the plan developed by SMS group for a new stainless-steel plant to be built for Voestalpine Böhler Edelstahl, Kapfenberg, Austria.

SMS to Build Stainless Melting Complex for Böhler

Installing new EAF, AOD, ladle refining, plant control and automation, for commissioning in 2021

Voestalpine Böhler Edelstahl will have a new stainless-steel melt shop installed at its Kapfenberg, Austria, plant, the result of a contract placed with SMS group. The project will include an electric arc furnace, AOD converter, and other secondary metallurgy systems over approximately 50,000 sq.m. Hot commissioning for the new operation is schedule in mid 2021, according to SMS.

The contractor’s scope of supply includes basic and detail engineering, mechatronic plant technology, on-site construction supervision, and commissioning.

Böhler Edelstahl produces over 200 grades of high-speed specialty and tool steels, as well as open-die forgings (drop forging, high-speed forging, and semi-hot forging) and closed-die progressive (Hatebur process) forgings, in particular of aerospace customers. Among the examples of finished applications for its products Böhler Edelstahl lists structural parts, engine components and mounts, landing gear parts, and door segments used in the aircraft programs by manufacturers that include Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, and Embraer.

Early last year the Voestalpine subsidiary outlined an est. $42-million project to install a high-speed closed-die forging line.

The new stainless melting operation is intended to replace the existing operation and to produce 205,000 mt/year of high-performance steels for aerospace, automotive, and oil-and-gas markets.

SMS noted its plant design will set new standards for energy efficiency, environment protection, and automated production, as well as cost-efficient production and plant availability.

The centerpiece of the plant design will be a 55-mt EAF for melting high-purity scrap and alloys. Exhaust heat generated during process will be used to dry scrap before it is charged to the EAF.

The 60-ton vacuum converter will combine argon-oxygen decarburization for medium-carbon grades, with decarburization and degassing under vacuum for low and ultra-low carbon and nitrogen steel grades.

SMS also will install three ladle furnaces, two vacuum degassers, one vacuum-oxygen degasser, and one ladle treatment stand.

The plant builder’s X-Pact electrical and automation systems will be adopted throughout the operation, including X-Pact MES 4.0 production planning system and the X-Pact process guidance system (PGS) for digitalized stainless-steel production.

SMS group also will supply technological equipment for the Kapfenberg training center.

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