Strip casting technology
Strip casting allows the casting of new, high-manganese steels, by achieving energy and carbon dioxide savings in comparison to conventional technologies. Due to the low casting thickness, it is possible to save up to 75 percent during casting, heating and rolling. Apart from providing advantages in the manufacturing processes the steel casting process allows improvements in the utilization phase (e.g. increasing safety of vehicles).
Barriers and Drivers
Barriers: There are still some risks regarding commercial implementation, because of the necessary upscaling and longer hours of operation. Experience with such technology has just been collected on a laboratory scale in Clausthal. Also the new steel may not outweigh its advantages (up to now, no cost estimates have been published for a future series production).
Drivers: The Belt Casting Technology requires six times less material than a conventional continuous casting plant. Also 2.1 gigajoule per ton of hot rolled steel can be saved compared to the typical manufacturing process of flat steel by using the combination of strip casting and steckel-mills. Even 2.7 gigajoule per ton of steel can be saved by using the strip casting and in-line rolling. Furthermore, cooling water does not come in direct contact with the product, which allows to use a closed water circuit.
According to the manufacturers` data, 25000 tons of high-performance steel can be produced by 2012. If these amount would be used in the automotive manufacturing , 160.000 cars could be built. While less steel is needed for each car, resulting in reduced weight, a reduction of fuel consumption of these cars is possible.
In addition, this technology provides the potential to substitute conventional steel products.
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