Sojitz Corporation


Notification of Completion of the Revamping of ACOMINAS' No.1 Blast Furnace in Brazil, a Joint Order Received by Nissho Iwai and Nippon Steel Corporation.

Aug. 23, 2001

TOKYO(August 23, 2001)-- Nissho Iwai Corporation and Nippon Steel Corporation have been working on the revamping of ACOMINAS' No.1 Blast Furnace, a turnkey order which was jointly received in June 2000 by the said companies from ACOMINAS in Brazil, which has been safely completed the facilities were handed over after the re-firing of the blast furnace on July 14, 2001, a day earlier than the estimated period of work. After re-firing, the No. 1 Blast Furnace has been operating smoothly and has achieved full operation at the beginning of August.

ACOMINAS has been operating with the No. 1 Blast Furnace since October 1994, and it had decided to carry out the repair in May 2001 to extend its useful life for another 15 years and increase its capacity by approximately 15%, but since it has only one blast furnace in operation, making every effort to shorten the period of repair was demanded. Nissho Iwai Corporation and Nippon Steel Corporation group which have high levels of technical capabilities and many experiences of repair work, had proposed a short work period plan as well as work method applying the existing facilities such as blast furnace shell and piping to the maximum, based on their past repair experience, and drew up a work plan set-up which was most ideal to ACOMINAS' raw materials and operating condition.

With the co-operation of a local Brazilian contractor, the work proceeded smoothly and achieved a ground breaking result of reducing the short estimated work period by a day. Even after the initial firing, the production started up smoothly under the operation guidance of Nippon Steel Corporation, and has almost achieved full operation status. Moreover, meeting the demands of high heat load accompanying the blowing in of large quantity of pulverised coal, and the casting type copper staves (combination of cast iron staves and copper staves) of blast furnace cooling system adopted for achieving the short work period, have both shown a very stable start up.

The fifth blast furnace maker in Brazil and its annual pulverised coal production capacity is approximately three million tons. Its end products produced are slab, bloom and billet.

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