Good practice

Chinese steel mill example

Chinese steel mill example
© buhanovskiy, image #136785445, 2017, source:
Metal and plastic processing
Resource savings: Energy:
Reduced total energy cost by 0.4 %
Associated cost savings: Energy:
Premises and operation areas:
Production processes
Size of company:
Medium (less than 250)

Surprising gains from small changes

  • Steel mill makes a small adjustment to a key process and saves around €1 million annually
  • Adding insulation to its steel-making ladles saves a further € 635 000 a year

Heavy industry relies on seamless integration of processes and often large machinery which is not always easy to change or move around, even when the company can identify an inefficient operation or problem area. The steel industry is a typical example of this.

Yet despite these limitations, a careful review of the processes involved, and greater awareness of new technologies and methods can help a company make positive change from even simple reconfigurations. Take the example of a Chinese steel mill that took a closer look at the heights and energy efficiency issues in its workshop, and discovered a simple adjustment that could be made.

Key benefits

The company saved Yuan 8 million (~ € 1 million) annually by lowering the leveling bar in a coke furnace just a few centimetres, which reduced the mill’s total energy cost by 0.4 %.

The mill achieved an additional Yuan 5 million (~€ 635 000) in annual savings by adding an insulation layer to ladles used in steel-making.

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