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Visakhapatnam Steel Plant, popularly known as Vizag Steel Plant is one of the major steel producers in India. Vizag Steel Plant has been conferred Navratna status on 17 November 2010. Founded in 1971, the company focuses on producing value-added steel, with 214,000 tonnes produced in August 2010, out of 252,000 tonnes total of salable steel produced. It is the only integrated steel plant in the country to be certified for ISO 9001:2000, ISO 14001:2004 and OSHAS 18001:1999


On 17 April 1970, the then prime minister of India, Late Mrs. Indira Gandhi announced the government's decision in the Parliament to establish a steel plant at Visakhapatnam. The activities kicked off by appointing site selection committee in June 1970 and subsequently the committees report was approved for site. On 20 January 1971 she laid the foundation stone. Consultants were appointed in February 1971, and feasibility reports were submitted in 1972. The first block of land was taken over on 7 April 1974. M/s M.N. Dastur & Co was appointed as the consultant for preparing the detailed Project report in April 1975 and in October 1977 they have submitted the report for 3.4 mtpa of liquid steel. With the offer for assistance from government of erstwhile USSR, a revised project concept was evolved. Detailed Project Report for a plant capacity of 3.4 Mtpa was prepared by M/s M.N. Dastur & Co in November 1980. In February 1981 the contract

was signed with USSR for preparation of working drawings for coke ovens, Blast Furnace and sinter plant. The blast furnace foundation was laid with first mass concreting in the project in January 1982. The construction of township also started. A new company Rashtriya lspat Nigam Limited (RINL) was formed on 18 February 1982. Visakhapatnam Steel Plant was separated from SAIL and RINL was made the corporate entity of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant in April 1982. Vizag Steel Plant is the only Indian shore-based steel plant, and it has massive land, up to 19,000 acres (7,700 ha), and is poised to become up to 20 MT in a single campus and turnover in 2009-2010 was 10,600 Crores. Recently it has gone for expansion from 3.1 MT to 6.3 MT with an investement of 9000 crores.


This section consists of all the infrastructure facilities seen during the visit at Vizag Steel Plant.

3.1 Coke Ovens & Coal Chemical Plant

Coal is converted into coke by heating the prepared coal blend charge in the coke ovens in the absence of air at a temperature of 1000oC-1050oC for a period of 16/18 hours. The volatile matter of coal liberated during carbonization is collected in gas collecting mains in the form of raw coke oven gas passing through stand pipes and direct contact cooling with ammonia liquor spray. The gas cooled from 800oC to 80oC is drawn to Coal Chemical Plant by Exhauster. The residual coke is pushed out of the oven by pusher car through a guide into coke bucket. The red-hot coke is taken to coke dry cooling plant for cooling. The main by product in the process of coke making is crude coke oven gas and this has lot of valuable chemicals. Coal Chemical Plant recovers Ammonia (NH3), Tar and Benzol from CO-Gas. The primary By-products from Crude CO Gas are Ammonium Sulphate (NH4)2 SO4, Crude Tar, Crude Benzol and cleaned coke oven gas. The cooled coke from CDCP (Coke Dry Cooling Plant) is separated into 3 fractions, BF Coke i.e.

+25-70 mm which is sent to Blast Furnaces, Coke Breeze i.e. +0-15 mm which is sent to Sinter making and nut coke i.e., +15-25 mm, which is also used in the Blast Furnaces.

There are 4 batteries, each having 67 ovens. The volumetric capacity of each oven is 41.6 m3. Dry Coal charge /Oven is 32 t

Salient Features
Largest and technologically unique Coke Oven Batteries in the country at the time of commissioning. 7 metre tall coke ovens batteries. Selective crushing of coal to improve the coke quality. 100% Dry Quenching of coke using Nitrogen gas. Power generation, from the waste heat recovered, at BPTS (Back Pressure Turbine Station).

Production capacity 2.635 Mt of Gross coke per annum (2.261 Mt of BF Coke per annum)

3.2 Sinter Plant

Sintering is agglomeration of fine mineral particles into a porous mass by incipient fusion caused by heat produced by combustion within the mass itself. Iron ore fines, coke breeze, limestone and dolomite along with recycled metallurgical wastes are converted into agglomerated mass at the Sinter Plant, which forms 70-80% of iron bearing charge in the Blast Furnace. The vertical speed of sintering depends on the suction that is created under the grate more the suction higher will be the vertical speed of sintering and more the productivity. At VSP two exhausters are provided for each machine to create a suction of 1500 mm water column under the grate. Each exhauster is driven by a 5.6 MW motor capable of rotation the fan at 1000 rpm with an output of 15,000 m3/min

Two Sintering machines of Dwight Lloyd type having 312 M2 total grate area each.

Salient Features
On ground blending of sinter base mix.

Production Capacity - 5.256 MT of Sinter per annum.

3.3 Blast Furnace

Iron is made in the Blast Furnaces by smelting iron bearing materials with the help of coke and air. The solid charge materials like sinter, sized iron ore, etc. are charged in the vertical shaft of the Blast Furnace at top and hot air blast is blown through the tuyeres located at the bottom. The oxygen from the hot air combines with the carbon of the coke and generates heat and carbon monoxide. The gases while ascending upwards react with the charge. Eventually the charge melts and hot metal and slag are produced and tapped out. The cooled gas is also used as fuel in the plant. The Paul-wurth, bell loss top system is installed for furnace charging.

There are four hot blast stoves for each furnace with a total heating surface of 224,000 m2. High temperature zone is lined with silica and mullite corundum refractories, medium temperature zone, with kaoline refractories and low temperature zone with fire clay

refractories. Its novel circular cast house with four tap holes ensures continuous tapping of hot metal.

Two Blast furnaces of 3200 cum. useful volume each.

Salient Features
Conveyorised charging of Blast Furnaces Paul-Wurth Bell-less top charging system for Blast Furnace. On-line correction of coke moisture and batch weights. Circular cast house with four tap holes and no slag notch. Cast house slag granulation plant. Tuyere leakage detection system Gas Expansion turbines for power generation by utilizing the blast furnace gas top pressure Automation with Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC). A circular cast house with four tapholes and no slag notch.


Production Capacity 3.4 MT of Hot Metal per annum.

3.4 Steel Melt Shop & Continuous Casting

Steel is made in steel melting shop in the refractory lined vessels called LD Converters by blowing oxygen through the hot metal bath. While iron making is a reduction process, steel making is an oxidation process. The oxygen reacts with the carbon in the hot metal and this reaction releases large quantities of gas rich in carbon monoxide along with huge amount of dust. The gases released from the converter are collected, cooled, cleaned and recovered for use as fuel in the steel plant. The entire molten steel at VSP is continuously cast at the radial type continuous casting machines resulting in significant energy

conservation and better quality steel. 100% Continuous casting on such a large scale has been conceived for the first time in India.

Three LD converters of 133 cum. volume each 6 nos. of 4-Strand Continuous Bloom Casting machines.

Salient Features
100% Continuous casting of steel Converters gas cooling, cleaning and recovery systems Use of Sublance and computerisation of the converter process

Production Capacity 3.0 MT of Liquid Steel per annum 2.820 MT of CC Blooms per annum

3.5 Light & Medium Merchant Mill

Blooms from Continuous Casting Division are rolled into billets, some of which are sold and rest are sent to WRM. The continuous multi-line mill comprises 8 stand double strand roughing train, 2 Nos., 4 Stand Single strand finishing trains. Loopers are provided in between the finishing stands for tension free rolling in order to obtain good surface quality and tolerances. Housings are of closed top type. Roll necks are mounted in anti friction bearings.

Facilities 7 Strand Break-Down Mill 8 Strand Roughing Mill 5 Strand intermediate Mill (2 Strand rolling) 2*4 Strand Finishing Mill (Single Strand rolling) 6 nos. of 4-Strand Continuous Bloom Casting machines.

Salient Features Evaporating cooling systems in Rolling Mill furnaces. Computerization in Rolling Mill Tempcore cooling process facilitating high strength with good bendability and weldability.

Capacity A Mill of 0.710 MT per annum production capacity.

3.6 Wire Rod Mill

The Wire Rod Mill of VSP is high speed 4 strand No-Twist continuous mill designed to produce 8,50,000 T of wire rod coils. The mill is designed to produce plain wire rods from 5.5 mm to 12.7 mm dia and Rebar in 8mm, 10mm and 12mm diameter in coil form. However sizes up to 14mm are being rolled presently. The mill is constructed at an elevated level of +5350 mm. Rolled billets of 125 mm x 125 mm square cross section,

length ranging from 9.8 m to 10.4 m and weighing approx 1250 kgs are used as input material. The mill is designed to roll steel stock of 0.9% max. Carbon content.

Facilities 7 Strand Roughing Mill (4 Strand rolling) 6 Strand Intermediate Mill (4 Strand rolling) 4*2 Strand Pre-finishing Mill (Single Strand rolling) 4*10 Strand Finishing Mill (Single Strand rolling)

Salient Features Evaporating cooling systems in Rolling Mill furnaces. Computerization in Rolling Mill Controlled cooling of Wire Rods, by Stelmore process giving high strength and good ductility.

Capacity A Mill of 0.85 MT per annum production capacity.

3.7 Medium Merchant & Structural Mill

The Medium Merchant and Structural Mill (MMSM) is one of the modern rolling mills of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant. It is the third and last rolling mill as per the rationalized concept. This is a single strand continuous mill having production capacity of 8,50,000

T/year. The important feature of this mill is that Universal beams (both parallel and wide flange) have been rolled first time in India using Universal stands. Parallel flange beams have advantage over conventional beams as per the same weight the section is stronger and stiffer due to greater moment of inertia and higher radius of gyration.

Facilities 8 Strand Roughing Mill 6 Strand Intermediate Mill 6 Strand Finishing Mill

Salient Features Evaporating cooling systems in Rolling Mill furnaces. Sophisticated, High speed rolling mills with computerized controls

Capacity Walking Beam Furnace 1 lighting up 22.11.92 Walking Beam Furnace 2 lighting up 24.12.91 Mill inauguration 28.03.92