Metals Technologies (MT), a division of the Siemens Group Industrial Solutions and Services (I&S), has received a $100m order from the Brazilian steel producer Gerdau Açominas to supply of a continuous slab caster and an RH degassing plant.

The main functions of the RH degasser are for hydrogen removal, forced decarburization and the chemical heating of the steel. The unit is comprised of a vacuum pump, alloying system and T-COB (Technometal - Combined Oxygen Blowing) lance for oxygen blowing for the production of ultra-low-carbon-steel grades.

A ladle-car is hydraulically lifted which submerges the two RH snorkels into the liquid steel. Treatment is carried out by the circulation of argon gas through the snorkels under vacuum conditions. A furnace camera installed in the oxygen lance tip permanently monitors the liquid steel. The main affiliated equipment includes drying and re-heating stands, hydraulic units, media supplies and process and control systems.

Gerdau Açominas is currently implementing an expansion program for its Ouro Branco steel works in the State of Minas Gerais, Brazil to increase its annual steel production by fifty percent from three million tons to four and a half million tons.

The slabs produced with these new facilities will allow Gerdau Açominas to supply the expanding flat-product market. The majority of the slabs are foreseen for the international market. Both plants are designed to enable the installation of a second degassing stand and a second slab-casting strand.