Thyssenkrupp quantifies iron loss from blast furnace interruption

The reline of blast furnace No.1 at thyssenkrupp Steel’s mill complex in Duisburg will result in a production loss of 700,000 tonnes of pig iron, Kallanish is told by the company. The outage for the purpose of a reline lasts some 70 days, and the restart is scheduled for this month.

This major maintenance has been repeatedly questioned as it comes during a period of shortages, high demand and high prices the mill could achieve. Executives previously maintained that the measure could not be postponed as it has become technically unavoidable. Its preparation has taken nearly a year, and could not reasonably be stooped even when it became obvious that the economy is surging.

Still, a spokesman from the works council of tk Steel tells Kallanish that the measure comes late by about one year. It could have been carried out altogether earlier, but the investment was postponed by parent company thyssenkrupp AG. “We wanted to have it sooner, and eventually it could not be pushed back any more, so now it comes at an inadequate time,” he says.

Tk AG was hesitant with lining up investments into Steel for a long time, given that it was pondering spinning off the unit. Eventually, however, it decided on the campaign “2030” with billions of euros to be invested in the future of steelmaking in Duisburg. “We at tk Steel have fought for this, and it was implemented, even despite Covid-19,” the spokesman says.

Meanwhile, some defect was recently heard to have occurred at one of the other blast furnaces. This, however, was only a leak of gas without causing any noteworthy hazard, damage or production loss, he says.

Christian Koehl Germany