Manufacturing News

Cheap US gas prices could make BlueScope direct reduced iron factory viable

BlueScope Steel is believed to be considering a direct reduced iron plant at its Ohio site.

The Australian suggests that the plant, to be located at BlueScope’s hot-rolled products factory, could be announced in March or later, after BlueScope receives $US 540 million from its joint venture with Nippon Steel. The JV was announced last August and reported in Manufacturers’ Monthly.

A feasibility study on a DRI plant, which could produce one million tonnes of the product a year, was announced last August. Such a plant would reduce costs by decreasing the need for pig iron and scrap metal in steelmaking.

DRI has become much less expensive in the US due to the company’s cheap gas prices, driven down by the shale gas glut.

Based on the costs of a larger DRI factory under construction by Nucor, the BlueScope project would cost an estimated $300 million to build.

Leave a Reply

Send this to a friend