of 0.6 MTPA hot metal production, which commenced operation in May 2003. In July 2014, POSCO stopped the operation of this plant and at present it is in the final stage of agreement with an Indian steel maker for its reinstallation in India (discussed under Upcoming FINEX plant in India).
Having successful results and following optimization of equipment and process parameters, POSCO decided to install the industrial FINEX F-1.5 M Plant (1.5 MTPA production capacity). The work was started to build the first commercial FINEX F-1.5M plant by POSCO in August 2004 which finally commenced operation in April 2007.
Based on the successful results of the FINEX F-1.5 M Plant, POSCO and Primetals Technologies decided to further develop FINEX F-2 M plant with an annual hot metal production capacity of 2 MTPA. The job was started by POSCO In 2011 to build the first FINEX F-2 M and the plant has been successfully put into operation in January 2014 and according to POSCO, the FINEX F-2 M plant produced 1.5 million tons of hot metal in the first 11 months.
Modifications made in the FINEX F-2 M Plant with their achievements
The design of the third generation FINEX F-2 M plant is characterized by a simplified plant concept resulting in decreased construction weights compared to the F-1.5M concept. Besides others, following major changes in its design are attributed to its achievement:
Different sizes of FINEX modules and capacity made available by POSCO to meet specific requirements of the customers are:
POSCO and MESCO: Earlier in this year Mideast Integrated Steel Limited, the flagship company of Mesco Group, India signed a memorandum with South Korean steel maker POSCO to use FINEX technology at its Kalinganagar plant in Jajpur district of Odisha (India). The first FINEX plant of POSCO which they ceased operating since July 2014, is to be transferred to MESCO. This project is part of the USD 700 million first phase steel expansion project to take Mesco Steel's capacity to 2 million tonnes. Presently, Mesco Steel operates two blast furnaces in its plant at Kalinganagar. The company has its own iron ore mine in Roida Barbil region of Keonjhar District in Odisha and another iron ore mining lease at Malangtoli in Odisha. In this month both Posco and Mesco have agreed for next meeting in November this year to discuss the modalities for transfer of Finex technology. After that, the process of dismantling of Posco's Finex plant in Korea and its subsequent installation at Mesco premises would take off. The Finex plant during operation would need a running 100 Mw captive power plant (CPP) and an oxygen plant of 1,000 tonne per day (tpd) capacity. Finex process is expected to cut hot metal production cost for Mesco by Rs 2000-2500 per tonne.
The FINEX is the latest addition and an optimized fine-ore smelting reduction (SR) process of iron making developed by POSCO that can be considered as an offshoot of COREX technology. In December 1992, POSCO and Primetals Technologies signed a cooperation agreement for the joint development of the FINEX Process. The first FINEX plant with a pilot scale production was started on November 14th 1995. In 2002 POSCO converted one the existing COREX plant into FINEX F-0.6M demonstration plant with a nominal capacity
POSCO and USPL: In Aug’15 POSCO signed a memorandum with Uttam Steel and Power Limited (USPL) to set up 3 MTPA integrated steel plant in Maharashtra (India) at an envisaged investment of nearly ₹ 20,000 crore (Approximately 3.07 Billion USD). The proposed project at Satarda in Maharashtra’s Sindhudurg district in India is based on POSCO’s patented Finex process. For complete details please refer to our article POSCO signs MOU with Uttam Steel and Power Limited (USPL) to set up a 3 MTPA Integrated Steel Plant at Satarda, India
These modifications helped in reducing overall construction weight of the FINEX F-2.0M plant by approx. 9% and required no larger space in the plant layout. After start-up in January 2014, operation optimization and facility stabilization, the productivity of the F-2.0M plant achieved its target value of 5760 t/d in April 2014. Since then operation targets are achieved and operational optimization is under progress to further optimize coal consumption.
Due to improvements in equipment and operational skills, a target availability of greater than 95% could be achieved in the first few months of operation.
In another article we have already discussed about what is FINEX Process, some of its merits and limitations (disadvantages). Here we give a brief data about how the FINEX process evolved from COREX technology, FINEX plants were started and subsequent developments and changes brought in those FINEX plants with their effects besides, the steel plants with FINEX process in operation (existing & upcoming FINEX Plants).