Technology Committees

Refractory Systems Technology Committee Activities

Lionel Rebouillat presented a plaque of appreciation to Wayne Allen for hosting the RSTC’s tour of Steel Dynamics Inc. – Flat Roll Group Columbus (left to right): Xin Zhang, Allen, Rebouillat and Jimmy Barrett.

The RSTC met 22–23 February 2017, Columbus, Miss., USA. The RSTC reviewed the latest Steel Industry Fatalities statistics and held an open roundtable discussion on safety.
The group reviewed the RSTC’s technical program development for AISTech 2017, which includes seven sessions, four of which are being held jointly with other Technology Committees.
Committee officers for 2017–2018 were discussed and elections will take place during the RSTC meeting at AISTech 2017.
Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar, which was held in October 2016, was reviewed, noting a good turnout of producer members and overall attendance. Planning is underway for the next installment, to be held 23–26 October 2017 in Milwaukee, Wis., USA, with a tour of Charter Steel – Saukville.
The RSTC discussed future meeting locations and tours. The fall 2017 meeting is tentatively planned for early October in Montreal, Que., Canada, with a tour of ArcelorMittal Long Products Canada.

The following technical presentations were given:

  • “Improved Bottom Optimized Solution (IBOS),” by Korey Skala, RHI.

  • “Tundish Design: Yield Enhancing System — Impact and Advantages,” by Dan Schaner, Vesuvius.

The RSTC enjoyed a tour of Steel Dynamics Inc. – Flat Roll Group Columbus during their meeting on 22–23 February 2016.

The LSRTC and RSTC met 13 October 2016, Birmingham, Ala., USA co-located with Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar​. The LSRTC and RSTC held separate business meetings and convened as a group for technical presentations.
During their separate meetings, each committee reviewed the 2016 Steel Industry Fatalities report, followed by a safety roundtable discussion on the cause, age, area and annual breakdown of incidents.
Rakesh Dhaka, RSTC papers chair, led a discussion on the RSTC’s AISTech 2017 technical sessions. Twenty-nine papers have been selected and organized into six sessions, three of which will be held jointly with other committees. Matt Hallam discussed the LSRTC’s technical session development, which includes 21 abstracts. Session titles and chairs were identified and the roles of the session chairs and papers chair were reviewed.
The 2017 AIST RSTC Best Paper Award was discussed, along with the development of evaluation criteria. The winner of the 2017 AIST Ladle and Secondary Refining Best Paper Award was announced. These awards will be presented at each committee’s respective meeting at AISTech 2017 in May.
Jimmy Barrett, LSRTC education chair, reviewed Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar, noting a good producer turnout this year. The next conference will be held 23–26 October 2017 in Milwaukee, Wis., USA. Charter Steel – Saukville will serve as host plant.

The following presentations were given:

  • “Refractory Choice for Steel Ladles,” by Cassie Martin, D. Martin Enterprises.

  • “Effect of Steel Mill Refractory Practices on Ladle Shell Lives and Update on Technical Report No. 9,” by Matt Nousak, Middough LLC.

Xin Zhang (left) presented the RSTC service plaque to
Albert Dainton (right).

The RSTC met 17 May 2016, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Xin Zhang, ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor

  • Vice chair: Lionel Rebouillat, Pyrotek Canada Inc.

  • Papers chair: Rakesh Dhaka, U. S. Steel Research and Technology Center

  • Education chair: Jimmy Barrett, Allied Mineral Products Inc.

The RSTC and LSRTC met 10–11 February 2016, Mobile, Ala., USA. The 2015–2016 Steel Industry Fatalities statistics were reviewed, followed by a safety roundtable discussion.
The committees reviewed their technical sessions for AISTech 2016. LSRTC has five sessions scheduled, and the RSTC has four. The role of the session chair was reviewed.
Nominations for committee officers for the 2016–2017 term were accepted and approved.
Jimmy Barrett discussed the evaluations from Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar attendees. Seminar presenters were given their individual appraisals from the attendees.
The LSRTC and RSTC will hold another joint meeting in October in Birmingham, Ala., USA, with a tour of CMC Steel Alabama. The meeting will focus on ladle campaigns/ladle deformation.
The following technical presentations were given:

  • “Technology Update on Laser Monitoring of Metallurgical Vessels,” by Michel Bonin of Process Metrix.

  • “Experiences With Laser Monitoring at SSAB Mobile,” by Greg Manfredi of SSAB.

  • “Latest Techniques in IR Thermal Imaging of Metallurgical Vessels,” by Tom Connors of Connors Industrials Inc.

  • “Experiences With Laser Monitoring at ArcelorMittal Burns Harbor,” by Sanjay Kumar of ArcelorMittal Burns Harbor.

  • “Auto Tracking of Steel Plant Ladles Using RFID-Wireless Systems,” by Federico Ahualli of AustralTek LLC.

The Ladle & Secondary Refining Technology Committee and the Refractory Systems Technology Committee toured SSAB Mobile during their joint meeting on 10–11 February 2016.

The RSTC met 8 October 2015, Memphis, Tenn., USA, in conjunction with Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar. Lionel Rebouillat reviewed the status of the RSTC’s AISTech 2016 session development. There will be 20 papers presented across four sessions, two of which will be joint sessions with the Ladle & Secondary Refining and Continuous Casting Technology Committees. Volunteers were solicited for session chairs. The responsibilities of the session chairs were reviewed with the group.
The group also finalized its AISTech 2017 Call for Papers topic.
The initial feedback from Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar was discussed. The additional topics added concerning the tundish were deemed beneficial. There was a discussion of the time allotted to topics and modification of topics to better communicate the relevant information. This was tabled for a later discussion to include the Ladle & Secondary Refining Technology Committee members.

Albert Dainton (left) presented the RSTC service plaque to Dawn Mandich (right).

The RSTC met 5 May 2015, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Albert Dainton, Vesuvius USA

  • Vice chair: Xin Zhang, ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor

  • Papers chair: Lionel Rebouillat, Pyrotek Canada Inc.

Meeting Highlights:
The RSTC discussed Secondary Steelmaking Refractories — A Practical Training Seminar. James Barrett reviewed the schedule and gave some details on the sessions on tundish refractories.

The RSTC met 5–6 November 2014, Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, USA. Xin Zhang, RSTC papers chair, finalized the AISTech 2015 technical session structure for the RSTC.
The group reviewed the RSTC’s description for the AISTech 2016 Call for Papers.
It was decided that the RSTC will establish an annual best paper award to be presented at AISTech. Several members volunteered for this year’s evaluations.
Joe Malchar of Gerdau Long Steel North America Midlothian Mill gave a presentation on historical refractory consumption, current refractory projects, and process key performance indicators that are evaluated relative to refractory performance.
The RSTC agreed to add a section on tundish refractories to its 2015 technology training conference. On Thursday, 6 November, the group toured the Gerdau Long Steel North America Midlothian plant.

The RSTC held its meeting on 11–12 March 2014 in Milwaukee, Wis., USA. There were 24 out of 33 RSTC members in attendance. Albert Dainton, RSTC papers chair, presented the updated list of RSTC papers at AISTech 2014.
Nominations of RSTC officers took place during the RSTC meeting at AISTech in May.
A few ideas were discussed to promote the activities of the RSTC and increase attendance: invitation to plant tour personnel during future meetings, increased promotion of the plant tour, distribution of a newly designed flyer or Web link, and promotion of the technical presentations or discussions held during the meetings.
Kyle Kingsbury created a task force to develop a new specialty training conference on tundish refractories/continuous casting. Members of this task force include: Jim Barrett, Bill Drake and Albert Dainton.
The group toured the Charter Steel – Saukville, Wisconsin plant in the afternoon. They visited the meltshop and hot mill areas of the plant.
The second day of the meeting concluded with a technical presentation from Tom Connors, president of Connors Industrials Inc. He presented an overview of thermographic sensor solutions for managing safety and refractory maintenance for steel and iron ladles.  

The RSTC held its meeting on 25–26 March 2013 in St. Louis, Mo. This occurred during the second-worst snowfall in St. Louis’ history. More than 12 inches of snow fell over a 24-hour period, causing major travel problems and flight cancellations. Despite the weather, 10 committee members braved the cold and attended the meeting. Rob Doty, RSTC chair, conducted the meeting. Dawn Mandich, papers chair, reviewed AISTech 2013 paper and session chair responsibilities. Session chair assignments were reviewed and finalized. The main agenda item included discussion regarding the 2013 Ladle Refractory and Secondary Steelmaking Short Course. The course will be held 30 September–2 October in Charleston, S.C., with the RSTC meeting to follow on 3 October. Additions to this year’s course will include a session on plant safety and process modeling. A discussion followed on possible future additions to the course schedule. Topics were discussed for future RSTC meetings. All RSTC members were asked to submit a recommendation that would not be considered “ethics” issues. On Tuesday, 26 March 2013, the RSTC toured the SunCoke Energy facility in Granite City, Ill. The tour was organized and conducted by Gary West, refractory technology specialist at SunCoke Energy.

The Refractory Systems Technology Committee (RSTC) met on Monday, 7 May 2012 at AISTech 2012 in Atlanta, Ga. Yong Lee, RSTC chair, introduced himself and the other members and thanked everyone for attending the meeting. There were 15 members in attendance. Some RSTC members could not attend due to conflict with other committee meetings. Lee reviewed and discussed the last meeting at United States Steel Corporation Research and Technology Center, where the RSTC compared testing methods of magnesia carbon brick at U. S. Steel vs. ArcelorMittal. The results of testing were extremely close at both locations. Rob Doty handed out “Proposed Recommendations for Datasheets.” The discussion regarding the datasheets ended with the decision to send a digital copy of recommendations to all committee members and have them each talk with their respective companies to see what the response will be to the recommendations. The RSTC mission statement was approved by all in attendance. The results of the 2012–2013 election were: Rob Doty, chair; Kyle Kingsbury, vice chair; and Dawn Mandich, papers chair.

The Refractory Systems Technology Committee (RSTC) met on 28 March 2012 in Munhall, Pa., at the U. S. Steel Research and Technology Center. There were 11 committee members in attendance. The committee’s mission statement was reviewed and discussed. The AISTech 2012 sessions were reviewed, and there was a discussion pertaining to the AISTech 2013 Call for Papers. The group discussed the possibility of a joint Specialty Training Conference with the Ironmaking Technology Committee to cover refractory systems utilized in ironmaking. In addition, the group discussed developing a standard data sheet for refractory. When completed, the data sheet would identify standard data and conditions to be reported for all types of refractory in order to make proper comparisons.
Results of the tests on magnesia carbon brick performed at ArcelorMittal and U. S. Steel labs were discussed to see how the results compared between the two facilities.
The meeting concluded with a tour of the U. S. Steel Research and Technology facility. The tour included areas within the facility that conduct material testing, water flow modeling, rolling and refractory testing. The group was impressed with the facility’s testing and evaluation capabilities to solve problems with existing products, as well as to develop new grades of products.