Llanwern Works is located to the East of Newport in South Wales and produces strip steel for UK and European markets through its pickle line and cold mill. Galvanised coating can also be applied through the site’s Zodiac line.
The site is capable of producing up to about 2,000,000 tonnes of hot rolled coil per year in a variety of finishes. The installation comprises hot rolling, cold rolling, pickling and galvanising activities. The works receives cast steel slabs by rail & road (rail being the main method of transport), which are held in slab storage yards pending processing.
Hot Rolling (currently in mothball status)
When scheduled for hot rolling, the slabs are transported to the entry end of the reheat furnaces. There are five Natural Gas fired reheat furnaces, the number in use at any time being dependant of production requirement. After exiting the furnaces the slabs pass through scale breakers and a roughing section reducing thickness from 20-25cm to 28-35mm. The strip is then passed through the finishing mill reducing the strip thickness to a minimum of 1.2mm and this is coiled on down-coilers to give coils with a maximum weight of 34 tonnes. The Hot Mill coils are sold without further treatment, or can undergo further processing. The Hot mill is operated flexibly, and can be mothballed at times of lower demand. During these times hot rolled products continue to be supplied to customer requirements from other Tata Steel sites.
Pickling and Oiling
Hot rolled coils are transported for processing on the Pickle Line in order to remove the oxide scale formed during the rolling process. After exiting the final tank the strip passes through rinse & drying sections. Finishing operations including: trimming, oiling, cutting and recoiling are then undertaken prior to direct despatch or further processing.
Continuous cold reduction of hot rolled pickled steel is undertaken on a five-stand tandem mill, with the 'continuous' strip formed by welding coil ends together. Processed coils are stored pending transportation / further process, in the 'dispatch bay'. The cold mill is operated flexibly, and can be mothballed at times of lower demand. During these times cold rolled products continue to be supplied to customer requirements from other Tata Steel sites.
The galvanising plant (ZODIAC) takes cold rolled reduced coil and pickle coil. The strip is annealed and coated with zinc to improve surface quality, shape and metallurgical properties. Individual coils are unwound and gauge-checked prior to welding to form a continuous strip. The strip then passes to an alkali based cleaning process followed by rinsing and drying. The furnace section heats the strip to ~750°C in an oxygen free environment with this temperature held for a given duration to allow annealing process before being cooled to achieve a temperature of ~460°C prior to entry to the zinc bath coating section. Final mechanical properties are achieved through temper rolling and tension levelling operations prior to passivation/oiling of the product to meet final customer specifications.
Automotive Finishing Line
The Automotive Finishing Line (AFL) is a dedicated inspection/reprocessing line which receives feedstock in the form of galvanised coil produced in the ZODIAC plant. Incoming coils are initially unwound and joined together with a transport weld to make the strip continuous. The strip is then passed through a visual inspection area to confirm and categorize any surface features present on top or bottom surfaces which are unsuitable for the customer. The strip then passes to a crank shear and laser welder which, when used in conjunction with each other, can remove any non-prime material in the form of metre-long sheets, prior to the strip being welded back together. The line can also carry out a number of further value adding operations which include centre slitting, trimming and oiling. The finished product is then recoiled and sent for final packing and dispatch.
The only greenhouse gas emissions from Llanwern are emissions of carbon dioxide resulting from the combustion of natural gas in heat treatment processes. Indirectly, the site contributes to CO2 emissions associated with the consumption of electricity for conveyance, pumping, cooling etc. Recent upgrades to the Zodiac line furnace have led to a reduction in natural gas usage.
Llanwern is covered by a new energy efficiency governance process established within Tata Steel Europe, whereby its energy performance has been compared to a benchmark as part of a gap analysis exercise. The site has generated a series of schemes aimed at bridging the gap with best practice. Internal targets for improvement have been established and Tata Steel Europe’s Chief Technical Officer and his direct reports review the progress of each site towards these on a quarterly basis.
In line with our objective to reduce / eliminate wastes to landfill, Llanwern segregates wastes at source, to maximise recycling & recovery potential. Recycling of materials has increased year on year.
Despite the fact that Llanwern uses predominantly 'waste' water from the water treatment industry as its main process supply, there is still every incentive to use this resource efficiently (in line with our environmental policy commitment).
Over recent years, many projects have been implemented on both process & domestic supplies, to progressively (and appreciably) reduce water usage and improve efficiency. This includes an effective programme of leak detection & response.
Transport impacts are managed centrally within Tata Steel and, as such, it is not possible to disaggregate the transport impacts associated with the production and delivery of specific products from specific locations from the total estimate of Tata Steel transport impacts. However a reduction is transport of coils being sent to Port Talbot for re-processing has been achieved following the completion of the new Automotive Finishing Line (AFL) at Llanwern.
- As shipping and logistics activities are managed centrally within Tata Steel it is not possible to disaggregate the CO2 emissions associated with the production and delivery of specific products from specific locations from the total estimate of Tata Steel transport impacts. See the general page for information on Tata Steel’s transport impacts and some of the steps we are taking to reduce these.
Tata Steel applies a common approach to employment and skills at all of its sites. See the general page for information on what Tata Steel is doing to advance the learning and development of its employees.
Llanwern has for many years enjoyed a strong & active relationship with the local community, and is seeking to make this relationship more sustainable by extending its sponsorship, donations, and community strategies further to local schools, charities, and sports clubs.
Steelworks have historically been perceived as being a polluting industry, with potential for nuisance & harm. However, much has changed, and we want to be viewed as a beneficial member of our community.
As a business with extensive landholdings, many of Tata Steel’s UK sites are home to a wide range of flora and fauna. The Llanwern site is bounded by rare remnant coastal grazing pasture – the Gwent levels. This historic landscape supports a range of nationally rare aquatic plants and invertebrates. By taking care of these habitats and species, we can fulfil our policy obligation to conserve and enhance biodiversity, and also provide an educational and recreational resource for the community.
|CO2 emission (t)||Verified EU ETS||134,621||48,236||45,555|
|Water use (m³)||3,782,310||2,550,662||2,574,517|
|Waste disposed (t) (% of waste produced)||1,048||1%||381||53%||529||20%|
|Waste recovered (t) (% of waste produced)||88,894||99%||342||47%||2,056||80%|
|Justified complaints (n)||2||0||0|
Emissions and consumption performance at Llanwern is very heavily influenced by the amount of production at the site in any given year.
*Reporting scope change at EU ETS phase III (2013)