Steelmaking: Process Description

Courtesy of U.S. Steel

Steelmaking further refines the iron by removal of carbon, silicon, sulfur, phosphorous, and manganese. In an integrated mill, the molten iron along with a certain amount of scrap is charged into a basic oxygen furnace in which oxygen and fluxes are used to oxidize the impurities out of the iron melt. The open hearth furnace is an obsolete steel making technology no longer used in the U.S. but still used, primarily in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc countries. Electric arc furnaces are used for melting and refining of steel scrap, primarily in minimills. Electric furnaces can also use direct reduced iron as part of the charge to better control alloy content. Ladle metallurgy is often used before or after basic processing to perform specific purification steps that allow faster processing in the basic steel making operation.



Rolling and Finishing