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Grupo Alfonso Gallardo> Siderúrgica Balboa > Production Process

Production Process

STEEL MILL

The aim of the production process is to produce ribbed steel bars from ferrous scrap as raw material. These are the stages:

Classifying scrap metal

The production process starts with the classification of the raw ferrous material, which is received and stored in different pits and areas by type, from which the baskets entered into the induction furnace are loaded.

Induction Furnace

The scrap is loaded in continuous phases into the Induction Furnace to melt it together with other materials as flux in order to eliminate slag.

The electric heat along with natural gas burners with oxygen and carbon injections melts the scrap. The final product is molten steel, which passes on to the next stage.

 

 

Ladle Furnace

The molten steel is passed on to the Ladle Furnace where, with the addition of ferroalloys and flux, the final composition is adjusted and a layer of slag is formed that eliminates undesired elements from the steel ladle, such as sulphur.

Through heating, the precise temperature is set for the continuous casting process, which solidifies the molten steel in order to finally obtain steel bars.

 

Continuous casting

The ladle of steel is transferred to the continuous caster. The continuous casting process consists of solidifying molten steel through a strictly controlled water cooling process, while keeping key factors in mind, including initial steel temperature and casting speed. The final product is a billet, or square steel ingot in different lengths.

ROLLING

The production process continues with the hot rolling of the billet, in order to obtain steel bars or "rebars." Rolling consists of continuously reducing the cross-section of the billet by passing it through various rolling cylinders. During this process, there are continuous quality controls on the weight per length, the cross-sections and the final product’s geometric characteristics in order to keep them within the parameters and mechanical properties for a certain tensile strength. The rolling stages are as follows:

Reheating the billets

The first step consists of reheating the billets in gas furnaces to a temperature of 1150-1200 ºC, in order to reach a plasticity that allows us to reduce the cross-section.

Grinding

The first stretch of the rolling mill includes the grinding chambers which produce a noticeable reduction of the billet’s initial cross section, leaving the bar ready for the intermediate mill. Finally after the grind, the first cropping is performed.

Intermediate mill

Here the bar passes through the rolling mills at increasing speeds, followed by the reduction in cross-section, and the second cropping of the billet.

Finishing mill

This part of the mill includes the last chambers where the final form is given to the product. Then a cut is made with the flywheel guillotine sheers at a length which is a multiple of the final length, in order to minimise cropping, and thus waste.

Cooling table and cold shearing

This consists in the controlled cooling of the long bars before their final cut to how they are supplied to the client.

Product packaging and labelling

We then take it to the automatic strapper which packages them into the commercial weights suitable for our client’s to unload. Here is where the final identification package labels are placed, showing all of the information including cast number, product, quality, production date, quality certificates and manufacturer.

The product is stored in the warehouse

The already labelled packages are transported to the warehouse where they are organised in piles according to diameter, quality and bar length. From here the trucks are loaded.

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