Primetals Technologies to modernize process automation for tandem cold rolling mill in Hämeenlinna, Finland

23 March 2021

Primetals Technologies has received an order from SSAB to modernize the existing Process Automation (Level 2) of the tandem cold rolling mill in Hämeenlinna. The Level 2 solution is state of the art and replaces the existing, obsolete process automation. More precise, coordinated set-points for threading and tailing out reduce off-gauge lengths. The system features ESXi virtualization and is therefore hardware neutral. Simulation on virtual machines enables calculations for new steel grades, thus giving the new solution Industry 4.0 capability. The scope of supply includes configuration, installation supervision, the system test and commissioning. The refurbishment is scheduled to be completed within just a few days during a planned shutdown in November 2021.

SSAB is a leading manufacturer of advanced high-strength steels (AHSS) and quenched and tempered steels (Q&T), strip, plate and tubular products. SSAB’s works in Finland and Sweden are based on the blast furnace route. The Hämeenlinna works produces strip products for the construction and automotive industries. Its portfolio includes hot-dip galvanized and color-coated coils. The four-stand tandem cold rolling mill can roll widths of between 660 and 1575 millimeters and exit strip gauges from 0.35 to 3.1 millimeters.

The rolling mill's process automation system is currently equipped with a Unix operating system in a virtual environment, a database solution and a Level 2 operator control and monitoring system. Primetals Technologies will supply new server, operating system and database solutions operated on an ESX hardware platform acting as a virtual machine. Some of the user software will be migrated and the rolling model modernized.

Primetals Technologies' scope of supply and performance includes replacing the operating system and inter-process communication via a new middleware and modernizing the database solution. The company will also provide a new Level 2 operator control and monitoring system, a test and simulation environment plus testing tools.

This will be supplemented by a switchable rolling model, replacement of the neural networks, modification of the Level 2 software for two-rounds rolling mills, setting improved set-points based on the specification of different strip tensions between end and beginning of the strip in the threading and tailing out operations as well as a new "fault time" server.

Tandem cold rolling mill in SSAB Hämeenlinna, Finland. The rolling mill is to receive new process automation from Primetals Technologies (Image: courtesy SSAB).

Primetals Technologies, Limited, headquartered in London, United Kingdom, is a pioneer and world leader in the fields of engineering, plant building, and the provision of lifecycle services for the metals industry. The company offers a complete technology, product, and services portfolio that includes integrated electrics and automation, digitalization, and environmental solutions. This covers every step of the iron and steel production chain-from the raw materials to the finished product-and includes the latest rolling solutions for the nonferrous metals sector. Primetals Technologies is a joint venture of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and partners, with around 7,000 employees worldwide. To learn more about Primetals Technologies, visit the company website