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Steel Shots: What We Did on Our Summer Vacation, Part 2
Posted by Alison Trost on August 6, 2010 at 11:15 AM.

Steel Shots: What We Did on Our Summer Vacation, Part 2

Steel rail sections begin to take shape as they drop from the continuous caster and turn onto the rolling line. Although already beginning to cool and transition to a solid state, the ductile and glowing steel bloom still registers a balmy 1800 *F.

 

Passing by a steel mill and stealing a glance from the road, it’s hard not to notice the massive size of the buildings and overall complex. Even so, it was still awe-inspiring to enter the Steel Dynamics Inc. mill in Columbia City, Ind., in mid-July and see the cavernous expanse of equipment and intricate machinery. The sheer size and complexity of this industrial operation is impressive to say the least.

 

At any one point in the mill you may find a multi-ton piece of machinery with pipes, compressors, nozzles, and more, choreographed in an intricate ballet of technological mastery. As filtered daylight streams through windows high above, dimly illuminating hundreds of linear feet of similar machinery, a latticework of stairs, and several control “pulpits,” cranes and gigantic ladles maneuver overhead and you begin to get a sense of how extraordinary this operation really is.

 

We were also struck by how little material requires rework compared to the overall volume of steel sections being produced. Day in and day out, these steel shapes are rolled and sent out for fabrication, and we’ve already seen how much work goes on there. Looking around us, it’s easy to see how reliable a steel solution is.

– Liz Rehwoldt and Zack Stutts, AISC Interns

 


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