Korean Steel Maker to Expand Coke Production

POSCO Group of Seoul in South Korea, the worlds's fourth biggest steel producer, has commissioned Uhde to provide extensive services for the construction of four new coke oven batteries to expand their coke production by more than 2.3 million tonnes per year. The coke plant is to be built at Gwangyang, a port city on the south coast, some 300km south-east of the capital Seoul.

Uhde's scope of services will include the complete basic engineering package as well as the process-relevant detail engineering, supply of core components and supervision of the construction and commissioning activities. The contract will be implemented in a consortium with two member companies of the POSCO Group, POSCO Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. and POSCON Corp. These two companies will undertake part of the detail engineering as well as local supplies. "This major contract worth significantly more than €100 million underlines the good reputation we enjoy in the coke-making sector throughout the world with our wide range of technological solutions from revamps to complete new plants," said Klaus Schneiders, Chairman of Uhde's Executive Board.

Together, the four coke oven batteries will have a coal throughput of approximately 3.8 million tonnes per year and will produce a total of about 2.3 million tonnes of coke annually. These four coke oven batteries will comprise 200 large-capacity coke ovens with a chamber height of 7.6m. A new gas treatment unit with a throughput of 175,000 standard cubic metres per hour will also be built at the same time. The first two coke oven batteries and the gas treatment unit are due to come on-stream in autumn 2010 and the other two will start production a year later.

This new contract is the latest chapter in what has become a fruitful partnership between the South Korean POSCO Group and Uhde's coke plant technologies division over the last 20 years or so. In 2007 Uhde successfully commissioned a new 750,000 tonne-per-year coke oven battery for POSCO in Pohang, South Korea, meaning that in total nine coke plant expansion stages have so far having been completed for POSCO at its works in Pohang and Gwangyang.

Uhde will equip the new coke plant with state-of-the-art technology, including large-capacity ovens which not only save space and reduce operating costs, but are also greener. In particular, application of the PROven® system will prevent the otherwise normal emissions from oven closures and charging operations.

The gas treatment unit will also be designed to the state of the art. All components will be operated in closed systems in order to rule out emissions and Uhde's two proprietary processes, CYCLASULF® and MONOCLAUS®, will be combined to guarantee the best possible desulphurisation of the coke oven gas and the recovery of high-purity sulphur. In addition, a biological wastewater treatment unit will ensure environment-friendly treatment and disposal of the process wastewater and Uhde's COKEMASTER® system for the automation of all plant components in the battery and gas treatment sections will provide for not only safe but also process and cost-optimised operation.

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