Wednesday, May 9, 2012


This will be an ongoing thread about ferromanganese production at my Raritan Steel complex.  I've mentioned, I think, in previous posts about modeling ferro operations.  My motivation is that it will add some operational interest, along with having some unique structures to model.

The premise is that periodically,  B-Furnace will go into ferro production - to supply Raritan Steel at Perth Amboy, but also other Raritan Plants.  Centralized production of this product so to speak.   In the early 1950s many of the large steel companies were doing this very thing.  I am basing my modeling on the prototype example at USS Duquesne.  Using blast furnaces to produce ferro was a short lived thing in the 1950s  as electric furnaces were already taking this over.    Much of the process was the same, just manganese iron ore was used.  But, there were differences in the handling of the product, and the most significant, the handling of the waste gases.   The latter wasn't much of an issue until the 1950's as the steel industry started to clean up it's act a bit in response to an increased public concern with air quality.   The waste gas from the furnace stack couldn't be run through the existing gas cleaning complex beyond the dust catcher as it would clog up the system.  The gas came out of the furnace much hotter, the dust was a different consistency, and it had a much higher moisture content due to all the cooling water sprayed on it.  The pre-1950's approach to this problem was simple - don't bother trying to clean and reuse the gas - just open up the bleeders on the furnace uptake - problem solved.
USS Duquesne blast furnace #3 in ferro production prior to adding a ferro gas cleaning plant
A temporary solution was to run the gas through the dust catcher and then up a very tall bleeder stack.  This would disperse the waste gas, and associated particulates over a much larger area to make it less noticeable.   By 1953 USS had addressed this problem at Duquesne with the addition of a ferro specific gas cleaning facility.  I will be attempting to model a representative example of this cleaning plant.


coke - twice as much used in the process - change quantities of carloads delivered
gas - dirty and can't be cleaned in normal loop - tee the dirty gas main after the dust catcher and install goggle valves - one trunk to the normal iron production gas cleaning equipment, and the other to the ferro gas cleaning plant
product - refractory lined gondolas used - need to model a processing plant for the ferro product

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