Metso Insights Blog Mining and metals blog The Metso Outotec ferrous and heat transfer offering
Metals refining
Nov 3, 2021

The Metso Outotec ferrous and heat transfer offering

The ferrous metals processing industry, just like every other global industry, is facing heavy pressure to clean up its act and reduce the carbon footprint of its operations. At the same time, it is wrestling with a shortfall in the availability of iron ore which is of sufficiently high quality for direct reduction (DR) processes. According to the latest figures from two major processors, only around 10% of the ore available today is suitable for the production of pellets for use in shaft furnaces.

Metso Outotec offers a number of proven technologies that will play an important role in the decarbonization of steelmaking, supporting the transition toward carbon neutrality. One of the most important is our Circored process described below.

Following the merger of Metso Minerals and Outotec last year, the portfolio of our Ferrous and Heat Transfer (FHT) business line now encompasses the complementary technologies and experience of both companies. Joining forces has strengthened our technological leadership and enabled us to evolve our solutions for pelletizing, direct reduction plants, and kilns for a variety of applications. Thanks to our strong focus on technology and advanced solutions combined with our world-class engineering capabilities, in the last year we have been able to secure additional business from ferrous customers around the world. Let’s take a look at our new combined offering.

Pelletizing: For iron ore pelletizing Metso Outotec offers two main technologies: the straight or travelling grate process and the grate kiln process. Metso Outotec and its predecessors have been industry leaders since the invention of these technologies and over the last sixty years have designed and delivered more than 130 plants, some with capacities close to 10 Mtpy.

Sintering: Our history in sintering started more than 100 years ago, and since then Metso Outotec has not only delivered hundreds of iron ore sinter plants but has constantly developed the process to cope with new challenges and trends. These have included the demand for larger plant capacities, the need to maintain consistently high product quality, the need to improve energy efficiency and reduce emissions, and the megatrend of digitalization. Although the number of new greenfield projects is limited, our expertise can help operators to improve the environmental footprint of their brownfield plants.

Kilns: Metso Outotec has been a leading supplier of rotary kilns for coke and pebble lime calciners, lime recovery, and iron ore direct reduction plants, with hundreds of installations around the world. A relatively new application of our kiln technologies is the processing of lithium ores with our spodumene calcination and acid roasting kilns, which is fostering the development of this mature process towards higher energy efficiency and replacement of fossil fuels.

Direct reduction: Metso Outotec has a long history in the direct reduction (DR) of iron ores. We were one of the inventors of the SL/RN process and supplied numerous DR shaft furnace plants. Today we focus on the Circored process for DR of iron ore fines with hydrogen as the only reductant. This proven technology will play an important role in the decarbonization of steelmaking by supporting the transition towards carbon neutrality via the replacement of blast furnaces and BOF with shaft furnaces for DR of the iron ore, followed by electric arc furnace (EAF). This route addresses the global lack of availability of high-grade ore by enabling low-grade ores to be treated with a low CO2 footprint.

Pyro equipment: Metso Outotec’s portfolio covers a wide range of other equipment for the metals industry, including fluid bed or rotary driers and the Holo-Flite indirect heat exchanger series for heating, cooling, or drying of bulk solids, filter cakes, and pastes or sludges.

Burners: A new division at Metso Outotec, KFS has over 20 years of experience in developing and delivering superior combustion system design and processes. The division is a center of excellence in computational fluid dynamics for burner design, system analysis, and physical modelling. It has a proven track record in gas, liquid, and solid fuels ­– including heavy fuel oil, natural gas, syn/biogas, H2, tall oil, coal, petroleum, methanol, alternative fuels, and biomass – for example for rotary kilns, fluid bed rectors, or pellet furnaces.

Digital solutions: Metso Outotec digital solutions for pelletizing and sintering plants incorporate decades of process and operation know-how to boost plant performance. Using our extensive experience as the original inventor of these processes, we have developed a suite of solutions for advanced process control and condition monitoring that will improve process performance, production capacity, and product quality while at the same time reducing energy consumption, environmental impact, and operational and maintenance costs.

Services: Based on our position as technology leader, our world-class R&D, and our proven track record with hundreds of plants designed and delivered worldwide, Metso Outotec offers end-to-end services for your plants. With our service portfolio of spare parts, inspection and audits, retrofits, modernizations, and capacity increases, we can help our customers to achieve their business goals cost effectively and with minimal disruption to production.


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