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voestalpine invests in continuous caster for high quality steels

17 July 2015 | 

The steel plant belonging to the international technology and capital goods group voestalpine in Linz where the company is headquartered is already one of the most modern of its kind in the world. Now, in addition to a series of other parallel projects, the Group is investing over EUR 100 million in a new continuous caster at this site which will produce over 1.2 million tons of high quality steel slabs annually. The largest of the four Group divisions, the Steel Division, is again raising the quality of steel grades with the most stringent surface requirements as a result of this technological development.

Yesterday saw the ground-breaking ceremony for the new Continuous Caster 8 (CC8) at the voestalpine plant site in Linz. From mid-2017 onwards the new facility will annually cast 1.2 million tons of steel in slabs – the pre-materials for high quality steel products including steel strip for automotive components. This strategically important investment at the Linz production site amounts to over EUR 100 million and will create 42 jobs. Construction is estimated to require 24 months.

Herbert Eibensteiner, Member of the Management Board of voestalpine AG and Head of the Steel Division of voestalpine Group

Innovative voestalpine steel products set quality standards globally, with lightweight, strong, and corrosion-resistant components used in demanding industry segments. The new Continuous Caster 8 is not only an investment in even better product quality, but also a clear commitment to Linz as a technological location.

Herbert Eibensteiner, Member of the Management Board of voestalpine AG and Head of the Steel Division of voestalpine Group

With a capacity of 1.2 million tons per year, the new CC8 will take over around a fifth of all steel slab production on site and replace Continuous Caster 3 (CC3).

As its name suggests, the continuous caster casts molten steel into a single strand in an ongoing process. After solidifying, the steel is cut into individual blocks, so-called slabs. The slabs are then rolled into high quality steel strips in the hot and cold rolling mill. The CC8 is designed to cast a single strand, for slabs with a thickness of up to 22.5 cm and a width of between 80 to 182 cm. Future adaptations will permit casting of slabs with a thickness of up to 28.5 cm. The slabs themselves are primarily high strength steel grades, ultra-low carbon steels with the most stringent of surface requirements for the automotive industry, and electric steel grades.

Construction of the Continuous Caster 8 belonging to the Steel Division, together with the recent ground-breaking ceremony for the Metal Forming Division’s second blank production facility, play an important role in securing the site at Linz over the long term. voestalpine currently employs a staff of 11,500 in Upper Austria which generated total revenue of around EUR 4 billion during the business year 2014/15. The Group has invested around EUR 3.3 billion in this Austrian province in the past ten years alone.

Steel Division

As the largest Group division in terms of revenue, the voestalpine Steel Division has attained global quality leadership in highest quality steel strip and a leading position worldwide in heavy plate for the most sophisticated applications as well as in casings for large turbines. The division is a strategic partner to Europe’s premium automotive manufacturers and major automotive suppliers. It is also one of the largest suppliers to the European consumer goods and white goods industries, as well as to the mechanical engineering sector. The division produces heavy plate for the energy sector which is used under extreme conditions in the oil & gas industries, for example, for deep-sea pipelines or in the permafrost regions of the world. In the business year 2014/15, the division generated revenue of more than EUR 3.9 billion and reported an operating result (EBITDA) of EUR 450 million. It has around 11,100 employees worldwide.

The voestalpine Group

The voestalpine Group is a steel-based technology and capital goods group that operates worldwide. With around 500 Group companies and locations in more than 50 countries and on all five continents, the Group has been listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange since 1995. With its top-quality products, the Group is one of the leading partners to the automotive and consumer goods industries in Europe and to the oil and gas industries worldwide. The voestalpine Group is also the world market leader in turnout technology, special rails, tool steel, and special sections. In the business year 2014/15, the voestalpine Group reported revenue of EUR 11.2 billion and an operating result (EBITDA) of EUR 1.5 billion; it had around 47,500 employees worldwide.