Tata Steel has completed a major upgrade of the Hot Strip Mill at its Port Talbot steelworks in South Wales enabling it to further improve the quality of its steel products used in a wide range of markets, including automotive, engineering, construction and domestic appliances.
The upgrade was focused on the installation of a new £ 25 million ‘reversing rougher’ – a key part of the process which transforms a 9-inch (23 cm) thick slab of steel into sheet less than an inch (2.5 cm) thick. The reversing rougher is believed to be the most powerful in Europe, with two new 12.5 MW motors, each equivalent to 17,000 hp or the power of about 150 cars.
The upgrade of the Hot Strip Mill follows investments totalling more than £ 250 million in state-of-the-art steelmaking and processing technology at the South Wales operations.
The Hot Strip Mill is a vital plant area in the Port Talbot steelworks where steel is rolled into continuous strip, forming 'hot rolled coil'. The steel is further processed at Tata Steel sites in Wales and England, before being delivered to manufacturers of cars, food and drink cans, building materials and kitchen appliances.