On October 18, voestalpine BÖHLER Edelstahl started up operation of the new special steel plant in Kapfenberg. It is indeed a special plant.
What is so special about voestalpine BÖHLER Edelstahl’s new special steel plant is that it is the first new steel plant to be built in Europe in 40 years. It sets new standards in special steel production with its highly digitalized technology and optimized environmental protection measures.
To the video: OPENING PARTY
Highly digitalized process control
Highly digitalized process technology ensures the particular characteristics of voestalpine special steels. At the heart of the plant is a state-of-the-art process control system (PCS) which monitors crucial planning parameters such as equipment condition, product quality, and energy consumption throughout the entire process chain. The PCS allows employees to access all the plant equipment from the central control station.
- The control station in the special steel plant extends over 4 floors
- 280 cameras with thermal imaging support process control
- 8,000 data sources regularly provide up-to-date information
- 13,500 km of cabling creates a digital network—a length that would cover the distance from Kapfenberg to Australia
Our new special steel plant is equipped with state-of-the-art technology: efficient and fully digitalized production lines and highly automated processes. This technology saves us 20 to 30% on consumables in production. These savings encompass all raw materials and energy sources needed in the plant.
Highly qualified employees
Irrespective of the processors, storage, and measuring cells—digitalization is only possible because of our employees. Digital technologies are a key subject in the training programs run at the in-house training center in Kapfenberg. Only by continuously deepening and expanding our employees’ know-how can we uphold our status as the most advanced special steel plant in the world.
"This excellent basis and the possibilities offered by digitalization take employee output to a whole new level."
Most efficient environmental protection measures
voestalpine BÖHLER Edelstahl’s new special steel plant is also a global leader in environmental protection. It uses the latest technologies to protect the environment and reduce emissions.
- Closed loop cooling reduces cooling water consumption by 90%
- In-house use of recovered thermal energy
- Surplus thermal energy is fed into the public grid, saving up to 22 GWh in district heating annually
- Process-adapted reduction of melt flow
- Sound-absorbing equipment cladding and process-adapted blower output
- Reduction of the dust volume by 75%
There are many factors that make the new special steel plant the most advanced of its kind in the world. Last but not least, it ensures the high quality of the process chain. Steel production, processing, rolling mill, forge, heat treatment, and finishing all ensure outstanding quality and processing reliability—for our customers all around the world.
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As a globally leading steel and technology group, we bear a lot of responsibility. We are all working with great passion and know-how to shape our future as a global company, and to lead by example. Instead of just talking about innovations, we show them in a human context.