Now on my website.
The Vitkovice steel works were founded in 1828 by the Archduke Rudolf von Österreich called the Rudolf Ironworks (Rudolfshütte).
The first coke fired blast furnace was commissioned in 1836.
In 1843 the viennese banker Salomon Mayer Rothschild bought the site.
A bessemer steel making shop was installed in 1864. From 1874 on the company was called Vitkovice Mining & Iron Corporation (Witkowitzer Bergbau- und Hüttengewerkschaft).
In 1909 a new melt shop including Talbot and open hearth furnaces was built. The company developed into a leading suplier of heavy machinery and steel constructions in Europe.
During the German occupation the works became part of the Reichswerke Hermann Göring.
In 1945 the site was nationalised by the Czechoslowakian government and now called Vítkovicke zelezarny Klement Gottwald (VZKG).
In 1967 the Talbot furnaces were shut down and replaced with tandem furnaces.
The 3,5 meter heavy plate mill was launched in 1972.
The first bottom blowing oxygen converter (72 tons) was commissioned in 1982 and a second vessel with combined blowing followed in 1991. The Tandem furnaces were shut down in 1993. The last blast furnace was closed down in 1998. In 2005 the steel making and rolling activities were sold to the Russian Evraz group.
Engineering Steel Belgium (ESB) in Seraing, Belgium announced that it will finally close down it’s steel making and casting facilities. Production is already down for two weeks.
The 70 ton electric arc furnace and the world’s largest round strand caster were built in 1972 by Cockerill to provide blooms for the Tubemeuse Pilger rolling mill across the river.
Tubemeuse was founded in 1911 under the name S.A. des Usines à Tubes de la Meuse. It was later taken over by Cockerill and went bancrupt in 1988. The mill carried on under the name New Tubemeuse until it filed bancruptcy again in 1993. The tube rolling facilities were closed down this time and the melt shop was sold to the Ellwood Steel
company from Pennsylvania.
In 2009 the German GMH group bought the site.
Five days ago ArcelorMittal already announced the closure of it’s coking plant in Seraing within the next two weeks. The attempt to sell the site (built in 1957) to the U.S.-based Oxbow company had failed.
The new coking plant Schwelgern in Duisburg, Germany was commmissioned by ThyssenKrupp in 2003 replacing the old August-Thyssen coke ovens.
Two batteries of 70 ovens each were built.
Some images now at Stahlseite.
Now at Stahlseite
The Little Matlock Rolling Mill in Sheffield, England was built in 1864 then driven by the water power of the Loxley River.
In 1957 an electric motor replaced the water wheel (which is still there).
The mill was later owned by Barworth Flockton Ltd and in 1997 it was taken over by Firth Rixson Ltd.
After a two year closure Pro-Roll Ltd took the site over in 2001 and saved the rolling mill from demolition.
Pro-Roll Ltd today hand rolls bars in small lots and from speciality alloys.
Images now at my website.
The ArcelorMittal plant in Nova Huta, a borough of Krakow, Poland was founded in 1949.
The mill was named Huta Lenin and the first iron from blast furnace No.1 was tapped in 1954.In 1955 an open hearth steel making shop was added and in 1956 a hot strip mill started production.
Blast furnaces No.2 and No.3 were completed in 1956 and 1958.
In between 1954-56 four coke oven batteries were built.
In 1961 a fourth blast furnace was added.
In 1966 the BOF melt shop containing two 100 ton vessels (a third vessel was added in 1971) was launched and the new large volume (2000m³) blast furnace No.5 was built.
In 1970 some of the old open hearth furnaces were replaced by two new Tandem furnaces.
In between 1978 and 1998 all BOFs were enlarged to 160 ton capacity.
In 1990 the mill got it’s new name Huta Tadeusz Sendzimira.
In June 1991 the open hearth steel plant was closed down.The Mittal steel group took over the site in 2005.Two years later a new state of the art wide hot strip mill was comissioned.
The steel mill in Söderfors, Sweden dates back to an old anchor forge founded in 1667.
In the 19th century the forge was extended by steel making and rolling mills and became part of Söderforsgatan Bruks AB.
In 1907 the plant was sold to Stora Kopparberg Bergslagen.
The Söderfors works merged with Fagersta AB in 1982 and were taken over by the French Eramet Group ten years later.
The eastern part of the site (rolling mill, forge and foundry) were sold subsequently to Scana Steel and the Akers group.
Scana Steel today runs a medium section rolling mill, a hammer forge and a 1000 ton forging press in Söderfors.
Images now at Stahlseite
After the remaining iron ore stocks at the Lucchini steel mill in Piombino, Italy were exhausted the company started to shut down blast furnace No. 4 last night. Chances are slim that it ever will be restarted.
Victoria, Anne, Bess and Mary.
Further viewing at Stahlseite.
Tata Steel’s integrated steel plant in Scunthorpe, GB was founded in 1864 under the name Frodingham Iron Works.
Iron was produced from local iron ore deposits since 1865. A Thomas converter steel making shop started it’s production in 1890.
In 1912 Frodingham took over the nearby Appleby Iron Co. (founded in 1874) to form the Appleby Frodingham Steel Co.
This enterprise became part of the United Steel Companies in 1937. In 1939 two new large volume blast furnaces were installed (Mary & Bess). In 1954 Anne and Victoria were added to complete the “Four Queens”.
In 1967 the United Steel Companies became part of the newly founded British Steel Corporation.
The Anchor project (1969-1973), one of the largest investments into the British steel industry ever, brought a new BOF shop, new rolling mills and the Immingham iron ore terminal by the Humber river.
British Steel merged with Koninklijke Hoogovens from the Netherlands to form Corus in 1999. Eigth years later Corus was taken over by the Tata Steel group from India.
Tata Scunthorpe today consists of 4 blast furnaces (three active) a BOF shop containing three 300 ton vessels, a slab caster, a bloom caster and three rolling mills (rails, heavy plate and wire).
Additional images now at Stahlseite
The Wetzlar works were founded by “Röchlingsche Eisen und Stahlwerke” and Buderus in 1920.
A new melt shop was erected in 1939.
In 1965 Buderus took over and in 2005 the Austrian steel company Böhler Uddeholm acquired the mill.
Nowadays Buderus Edelstahl produces about 300000 tons of crude steel in an electric arc furnace. All steel is casted into ingots.
The further production line includes a blooming mill, a hot strip rolling mill, three open die forging presses and a closed die forge.
The rolling mill in Fagersta goes back to one of the oldest steel companies in Sweden, Fagersta Bruk which had it’s origins in an iron hammer founded in 1611.
Fagersta Bruk became a limited company in 1873 and developed into one of the largest steel producers in central Sweden.
After merging with the Sandvik steel group in 1978 the iron production in blast furnaces was closed down. In 1982 the steel melt shop No. 1 ceased production too and one year later the former Fagersta group was dismantled and it’s remaining parts were sold to different companies.
After the the melt shop No.2 was closed down in 1985 only the wire mill kept on producing steel in Fagersta. It is specialized in stainless steel wire and owned by Outokumpu and Sandvik Materials.