Technology Committees

Ironmaking Committee Activities

The IMTC met 6 May 2019, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
The following officers were elected:

Chair: Larry Storm, ArcelorMittal Cleveland

Vice chair: Mitren Sukhram, Hatch Ltd.

Papers co-chairs: Nancy Ward, Stelco Inc., and Becky Hites, Steel-Insights LLC

Membership chair: Kyle Ferron, ArcelorMittal Dofasco G.P.

APB® chair: Stuart Street, AK Steel – Dearborn Works

The IMTC met 7 February 2019, Coraopolis, Pa., USA, co-located with the Eastern States Blast Furnace and Coke Oven Association conference.
The meeting began with a review of the Steel Industry Fatalities report and a safety roundtable discussion.
The IMTC finalized its AISTech 2019 technical sessions. There are 10 Ironmaking sessions and one joint session with the CMTC, for a total of 56 papers. All of the North American integrated plants are represented, with several from overseas as well. In addition, the responsibilities of the session chairs were reviewed.
Larry Storm discussed the nomination process for electing 2019–2020 IMTC officers.  
The IMTC reviewed its annual awards — the Josef S. Kapitan Award, the Thomas L. Joseph Award and the J.E. Johnson Jr. Award — and explained the purpose of each award. 
Stuart Street reviewed the 2019 AIST North American Blast Furnace Roundup.
Looking ahead, the IMTC began planning its Fall 2019 meeting, which will be held in Dearborn, Mich., USA. Tentative dates are 17–18 September. A tour of AK Steel – Dearborn Works will be offered.
The IMTC is considering an International Study Tour to draw in the global community. The group hasn’t held one since 2006.  
The Scrap Substitutes and Alternative Iron seminar will be held in Spring 2020 in Orlando, Fla., USA.

Nancy Ward (left), process engineer, and John D’Alessio (right), process technology director — blast furnace and coke ovens, Stelco, were presented with a plaque of appreciation.

The IMTC met 25–26 September 2018, Hamilton, Ont., Canada.
Nancy Ward and Mitren Sukhram, IMTC papers co-chairs, discussed AISTech 2019 session development. At the time of the meeting, a total of 63 abstracts had been submitted, 50 of which had been accepted.
Volunteers for session chair were taken, and the instructions for papers chair and session chair were reviewed.
Barry Hyde, IMTC chair, discussed the IMTC awards and acknowledged those individuals on the award selection committees. The J.E. Johnson Jr. Award recognizes up and coming (under 40) individuals involved in the industry. The Josef S. Kapitan Award is awarded to the top paper for each session. The Thomas L. Joseph Award recognizes distinguished contributions in the fields of ironmaking and ore agglomeration technology.
The AIST Process Benchmarker® was reviewed. Stuart Street is currently working on this task. Street also discussed the Rules of Thumb, and would like to present this at the next IMTC meeting.

The following individuals gave presentations:

  • David Berdusco, Paul Wurth — BF Monitoring Equipment — “TMT (Tapping-Measuring-Technology).” The presentation focused on furnace top and shell measurement above burden temperature probes.

  • Trevor Shellhammer, Shellhammer Consulting — “Tuyere Calorizing.” This presentation reviewed Burns Harbor blast furnace process development from 1999.

  • Floris VanLaar and Jesse Carreau, Allied Mineral Technical Services — “Continuous Hearth Monitoring and Analysis.”

  • David Chataway, Hatch — “Non-Destructing Testing (NDT) Technology.” This presentation covered stave measurement, refractory measurement, continuous monitoring and leak detection systems.

The following day, the group toured Stelco – Lake Erie Works.

Barry Hyde (left) presented Michael Riley (right) with the IMTC service plaque at AISTech 2018.

The IMTC met 7 May 2018, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Barry Hyde, Hatch Associates Consultants Inc.

  • Vice chair: Larry Storm, ArcelorMittal

  • Papers co-chairs: Mitren Sukhram, Hatch, and Nancy Ward, Stelco

  • Membership chair: Becky Hites, Steel-Insights LLC

  • APB® chair: Stuart Street, AK Steel – Dearborn Works

The IMTC met 1 February 2018, Coraopolis, Pa., USA, in conjunction with the Eastern States Blast Furnace and Coke Oven Association meeting.
Larry Storm discussed the IMTC’s AISTech technical sessions. The IMTC has 61 papers over 12 sessions.
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The IMTC discussed nominations for committee officers.
Discussion then focused on issues with getting producers involved in the committee and the importance of the membership chair for helping to keep producers involved.
The Blast Furnace Roundup was reviewed, which is published in the March issue of Iron & Steel Technology.
Stuart Street discussed the AIST Process Benchmarker® and gave an update on the IMTC’s Rule of Thumb.
The committee discussed the importance of its November meeting and whether it is still needed, since its original purpose was to put together the paper sessions for AISTech. Today the deadline for assembling the session layouts is months before the November meeting and everything is completed by the papers chair before that meeting. The possibility was discussed of having a webinar for this meeting instead to go over the session layouts for the rest of the committee to see.
Scholarships from the AIST Foundation were brought up for discussion, and members were reminded to encourage students to apply at

The India Member Chapter and the IMTC met 5–6 December 2017, Jamshedpur, India. AS Reddy, Tata Steel Ironmaking Technology Group chief, hosted the group for the seventh meeting of the IMC-IMTC since its inauguration in 2014. 
RN Bhattacharyya, IMC-IMTC chair, opened the meeting and asked for introductions from the 19 attending members. Uttam Singh, Tata Steel vice president — ironmaking designate, and Ashok Kumar, Tata Steel chief technology officer — process, addressed the group and challenged them to provide a forum for blast furnace technology personnel to discuss key technologies, key concerns and key projects. The IMC-IMTC should be a place to share ideas and data for the improvement of the Indian blast furnace community. The IMC-IMTC seeks to meet on a quarterly basis in the future.
The meeting showcased a strong program of technical presentations:

  • Paritosh Haldar, JSPL, presented data and operating experiences with the JSPL Angul 4,554 m3 blast furnace, which has been in operation since May 2017.

  • A Srinivas Rao, JSW, presented JSW’s improved pulverized coal injection (PCI) usage on its blast furnaces and he brought forward to the group a challenge faced with the No. 3 and No. 4 blast furnaces, which have begun to tilt off-center. Much discussion ensued to provide informational assistance to Mr. Rao.

  • Goutam Raut, Tata Steel Ironmaking Process Technology Group, presented on the PCI performance at the Tata Steel Jamshedpur blast furnaces. Tata Steel is seeking to improve the carbon injection rate through an extensive program focused on burden distribution, improved drainage during tapping, and by visualizing the internal state of the blast furnace to understand and make informed decisions.

  • RN Bhattacharyya, RINL – Vizag Steel, discussed the blow-in procedure for Blast Furnace No. 2 at Vizag Steel and its achievement of full production after 20 days.

  • Yogesh Sajjanwar, NMDC, provided an overview of the NMDC blast furnace which will be 4,500 m3 and is expected to be commissioned in September 2018.

  • Sajal Bhattacharjee, Mecon Ltd., provided a perspective on lowering the production costs of Indian blast furnaces. The goal would be to enhance production without CAPEX but also to show improvements in greenhouse gas emissions, zero discharge and improving specific energy consumption. Improving PCI injection, hot blast temperature and oxygen injection are key components to improved production.

  • AS Reddy presented on the Tata Steel Kalinganagar Granshot facility. The facility utilizes excess hot metal to produce shot-sized pellets of pig iron via a tundish pouring the molten iron into an engineered water spray system.

On 6 December 2017, the IMC-IMTC was given a tour of the Tata Steel ironmaking facilities. Included was the casthouse floor of I Blast Furnace, the facility’s newest blast furnace commissioned in 2012 which has a 3,814 m3 working volume, a 13-m-diameter hearth and is capable of producing 8,700 metric tons/day. The attendees also toured the No. 3 Sinter Line, which is capable of producing 350 metric tons of sinter per hour from iron ore fines and plant revert. The final stop was the No. 10 Coke Battery, which was built as part of the 2012 production expansion program at Tata Steel Jamshedpur.
Next IMC-IMTC Meeting: 5–6 April 2018, Hazira, India, hosted by Essar Steel. The committee is also considering a North American Blast Furnace Study Tour for September 2018, which would include a joint meeting with the AIST Ironmaking Technology Committee.

1. IMC-IMTC members on tour of Tata Steel I Blast Furnace. 2. Manish Agarwal, Tata Steel, showed the material feed chamber prior to the ignition furnace of the No. 3 Sinter Plant.
Mike Riley (left) presented a plaque of appreciation to Larry Storm (right) for hosting the IMTC’s tour of ArcelorMittal Cleveland.

The IMTC met 11–12 September 2017, Cleveland, Ohio, USA. The main agenda items of the meeting included an update on the “Rule of Thumb” project being developed by the IMTC. Some of its contents were reviewed, as well as discussion about the book format and social media page for group interaction.
The IMTC session development for AISTech 2018 was discussed. There are about 65 iron-producing abstracts that have been submitted and are undergoing review by the IMTC.
The status of the IMTC’s 2018 awards was also reviewed.
Process benchmarking (AIST Process Benchmarker™)
was discussed and it was agreed that the blast furnace participants would continue to input data.
Technical presentations were given on ArcelorMittal Cleveland’s blast furnace and on the impact of increasing O2 injection at the blast furnace. 

Stuart Street was presented with the IMTC service plaque.

The IMTC met 8 May 2017, Nashville, Tenn., USA.

The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Michael Riley, Praxair

  • Vice chair: Barry Hyde, Hatch

  • Papers co-chairs: Larry Storm, ArcelorMittal Cleveland, and Mitren Sukhram, Hatch

  • Membership chair: Mike Morson, ArcelorMittal Dofasco Inc.

The IMTC met 2 February 2017, Coraopolis, Pa., USA. The IMTC’s winter meeting was held in conjunction with the Eastern States Blast Furnace and Coke Oven Association meeting.
The meeting’s main focus was finalization of the IMTC’s technical sessions for AISTech 2017. Since the group receives a large number of abstracts each year for their technical program, exploration into developing a two-day Ironmaking Symposium was discussed. A task group will develop a framework for the symposium.
Committee officers for 2017–2018 were discussed and elections will take place at the IMTC’s meeting at
AISTech 2017.
The IMTC’s fall meeting is tentatively set for late September or October and includes AK Steel Corp. – Middletown Works and ArcelorMittal Cleveland as potential locations.
The AIST Process Benchmarker (APB) was reviewed and the data compiled for this year’s blast furnace roundup was finalized.
Updates regarding the IMTC’s awards were discussed.
The meeting concluded with a discussion on the “rules of thumb” for blast furnace design and operation being compiled by the group.

The IMTC met 6 December 2016, Warrendale, Pa., USA. The IMTC reviewed its technical sessions for AISTech 2017, which include three concurrent sessions during each of the three days of the conference, totaling about 70 ironmaking presentations. The ironmaking program was arranged by session title, and session chairs were assigned.
The group was updated on the status of three of the awards presented by the IMTC — the J.E. Johnson Award, the T.L. Joseph Award and the Josef S. Kapitan Award. 
The North American Blast Furnace Roundup data was discussed, along with getting current data for the AIST Process Benchmarker® system. 
Several technical presentations were given, all related to various aspects of adding metallic to the blast furnace in various forms such as direct reduced iron, hot briquetted iron, etc., as well as the impact of various grades of this metallic charge on operation and production costs.

The IMTC met 7–8 September 2016, Hammond, Ind., USA. The business portion of the meeting was located on the Purdue University Northwest campus at the Steel Manufacturing Simulation and Visualization Consortium laboratory.
The IMTC discussed its technical sessions for AISTech 2017. The group reviewed 61 abstracts and discussed its Call for Papers topic for AISTech 2018.
The AIST Process Benchmarker® and timing of data entry was discussed. Stuart Street encouraged producers to fill in their data in a timely fashion.
The IMTC is compiling a “Rules of Thumb” document for the design and proper operation of a blast furnace. More than 100 separate submissions have been compiled to date and the intent is to publish this compilation in a form of a book or technical report.
The IMTC elected Mitren Suhram as its membership chair. As a result, Barry Hyde moved up to vice chair and Larry Storm to papers chair.
The following technical presentations were given:

  • “Opportunities for Increased Understanding of the Use Metallic in Blast Furnace Ironmaking Through Simulation and Visualization Modeling,” by Chenn Zhou, Purdue University Northwest.

  • “Opportunities for BF Consumption of EAF, Integrated Metallic and Oxides,” by Steven Snell, Hickman, Williams & Co.

  • “Technical and Economic Considerations for HBI in North American BFs,” by Mitren Suthrem, Hatch.

A general discussion followed the presentations.
Following lunch the group toured ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor iron-producing division No. 7 blast furnace.

Stuart Street (left), IMTC chair, presented James Bobek (right), ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor, with a plaque of appreciation for hosting the IMTC’s meeting on 7–8 September 2016 at Purdue University Northwest.
Stuart Street (left) presented the IMTC service plaque to
Al Dzermejko (right).

The IMTC met 16 May 2016, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

The following officers were elected:

  • Chair: Stuart Street, AK Steel Corp. – Dearborn Works

  • Vice chair: Mike Riley, Praxair Inc.

  • Papers co-chairs: Mike Pomeroy, ArcelorMittal Dofasco Inc., and Barry Hyde, Hatch Ltd.

  • Membership chair: Larry Storm, ArcelorMittal Cleveland

The IMTC met 8 December 2015, Warrendale, Pa., USA. 
A winner was selected for the Josef S. Kapitan Best Paper Award for Ironmaking. This award will be presented at the IMTC meeting during AISTech 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. The awards committee also updated the group on the selection process for the T.L. Joseph Award and the J.E. Johnson Award. Winners of these awards should be selected by the IMTC’s next meeting.
Mike Riley and Mike Pomeroy reviewed the IMTC’s AISTech 2016 technical session development. Currently there are 10 sessions envisioned over each of the three days of the Technology Conference. There will also be a panel discussion titled “Postponing Blast Furnace Relines and Capital Expenditures.” Titles of the sessions and session chairs have been finalized.  The roles and responsibilities of the papers chair and session chair were reviewed.
The group then finalized its Call for Papers topic for AISTech 2017.
A discussion about developing a training conference ended in the decision to postpone this effort until a future date.
The meeting concluded with four technical presentations:

  • “Improving Tuyere Performance to Extend Lifetime,” by Reza Farshidi, CECAL.

  • “Reducing/Eliminating Raceway Impingement of Bosh Zone,” by Al Dzermejko, Magneco/Metrel.

  • “Trevor’s Top 10 Ways to Shut Down a BlastFurnace,” by Trevor Shellhammer, Shellhammer Consulting.

  • “Tuyere Designs,” by Skip Slaven, FalconFoundry Co.

The IMTC met 29–30 September 2015, Dearborn, Mich., USA. Mike Riley gave an update on the Josef Kapitan Award for Ironmaking. This award will be presented at the IMTC meeting during AISTech 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA.
Mike Riley and Mike Pomeroy discussed the IMTC technical session for AISTech 2016. 

  • There were 44 abstracts submitted as of 29 September. The IMTC program has 25 paper slots with no parallel sessions (one session per half-day). 

  • A panel discussion is being organized. Suggested topics include challenges of achieving minimum coke rate, blast furnace campaign extension and use of recycled materials.

  • Joe Poveromo, chair of the DRI & Alternative Ironmaking Subcommittee, reviewed the DRI session that is being planned. There are currently eight papers for either a Monday or Tuesday afternoon session.

  • Papers chair and session chair instructions were reviewed with the group. 

The AISTech 2017 Call for Papers topic was finalized.
Al Dzermejko solicited comments from the group for the AIST Leadership Conference in November.
Stuart Street gave the group an update on the AIST 2016 North American Blast Furnace Roundup.
Technical presentations on taphole repair and rebuilding were given by Bruce Stackhouse and Al Dzermejko. In addition, Dzermejko shared four recent presentations from METEC/2nd ESTAD Conference in June 2015.
The next day the group toured AK Steel Corp. – Dearborn Works’ blast furnace C.

IMTC chair, Al Dzermejko (left), presented a plaque of appreciation to Stuart Street (right) for hosting the IMTC’s tour of AK Steel Corp. – Dearborn Works.

The DRISC met 6 May 2015, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair — Angelo Manenti, Tenova Core

  • Vice chair — Jeffrey Myers, Midrex Technologies Inc.

  • Papers chair — Joseph Poveromo, RMI Global Consulting

Meeting Highlights:
The DRISC reviewed the AISTech 2015 technical program, which by most accounts was well attended and successful. The DRI technical  presentation most heavily attended was the application of EAF Experiences With DRI.
The 2016 DRI Roundup was discussed. The DRI Roundup will initially focus on the Americas and be limited to shaft furnaces. Morteza  Sadri reviewed the status of the DRI Roundup questionnaire, which will be reviewed and revised one more time before being circulated for data input. While the revisions to the questionnaire are developed, a user’s guide for filling out the questionnaire will also be developed by Sadri. The goal is to publish the DRI Roundup with the EAF Roundup in  the January 2016 issue of Iron & Steel Technology. Therefore, the roundup shall be submitted for publication by 1 November 2015.
The next DRI Seminar was discussed. The DRISC would like to host the Scrap Substitutes and Alternative Ironmaking symposium in the fall of 2016.
Discussion was held regarding how to make the DRISC a stand-alone Technology Committee. Mark Rosi of AIST said this process has already started but will be decided by the AIST Board of Directors. The subcommittee was encouraged to keep up with the work it has already started to demonstrate the viability and need to become an independent Technology Committee.

Al Dzermejko (left) presented the IMTC service plaque to
Charles Copeland (right).

The IMTC met 4 May 2015, Cleveland, Oh., USA.
The following officers were elected:

  • Chair — Al Dzermejko, Magneco/Metrel Inc.

  • Vice chair — Stuart Street, AK Steel Corp. – Dearborn Works

  • Papers co-chairs — Mike Riley, Praxair Inc., and

  • Mike Pomeroy, ArcelorMittal Dofasco Inc.

  • Membership chair — Ryan Hershey, Vesuvius USA

Meeting Highlights:
The IMTC discussed the AISTech 2015 technical sessions and gave their feedback.

The IMTC met 5 February 2015, Coraopolis, Pa., USA. There were 45 IMTC members at the IMTC winter meeting, which was held in conjunction with the Eastern States Blast Furnace and Coke Oven Association annual meeting.  
Mike Riley reviewed the current AISTech 2015 sessions being assembled. IMTC chair Chuck Copeland solicited nominations for the next IMTC papers chair position.
The group reviewed the North American Blast Furnace Roundup, which was published in the March 2015 issue of Iron & Steel Technology.
Jerry Nelesen updated the group on the ironmaking specialty conference that is currently being planned.
Joe Poveromo and Chuck Copeland discussed the process for bestowing the Technology Committee awards, which include the J.E. Johnson Jr. Award and the Thomas L. Joseph Award.
Jeffrey Myers updated the group on the newly formed DRI & Alternative Iron Technology Subcommittee activities and the DRI: Production, Logistics and Utilization specialty conference that was held in November 2014.
Bruce Stackhouse gave a presentation concerning his recent visit to the European Blast Furnace Committee meeting.
The meeting concluded with a discussion on operating issues at furnaces during the winter season and any upcoming major blast furnace projects or relines.
Next IMTC Meeting:Monday, 4 May 2015 during AISTech 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Next DRI & Alternative Iron Technology Subcommittee Meeting: Wednesday, 6 May 2015 during AISTech 2015 in Cleveland Ohio, USA