For the last two years, Hasse Construction Company, Inc. has been performing construction on an ArcelorMittal project designed to produce a higher quality steel more efficiently right here in the Region.
The walking beam furnace installation project is well underway at ArcelorMittal Burns Harbor, with Hasse Construction performing all civil scope. An 80-inch hot strip rolling mill houses the foundation for the two new walking beam furnaces, each with a capacity for 500 tons per hour (tph). The walking beam furnaces (WBF) represent a $140-million investment for ArcelorMittal to enhance the quality of their product and are part of the company’s Action 2020 improvement plan.
The WBFs will produce higher quality steel for customers and downstream facilities by the process of slabs being “walked” through the furnace rather than being pushed. This strategy eliminates the potential for surface defects.
John Hasse, project manager for the WBF venture, said that the project stands for an important mark of continued progress in the Region and in the country.
“This project is helping to keep steel mills competitive in the Region,” Hasse said. “In this age of excess capacity of steel on the worldwide market, anything we can do here in the states to make our mills more competitive is good for the United States, good for the local economy and employees, and hopefully keeps that mill open for a long period of time as an efficient producer of steel.”
Hasse Construction Company has been doing a lot of work with steel mills recently, as there’s been a surge of reinvestment in the industry within the last two years. No stranger to working with ArcelorMittal, Hasse described a few of the overlapping values the companies share.
“We have common goals of working competitively, working safely, and creating a quality product,” Hasse said.
The WBF project has been an exciting challenge for the family-owned construction company, now in its third generation of operators. Hasse said 15,000 cubic yards of concrete and 2000 anchor bolts have been installed to help move the product along.
“We had to install our anchor bolts with incredible accuracy and within tight tolerances. The multiple furnace structures that will be eventually placed on anchor bolts that were manufactured in Europe, must fit up with all of these anchor bolts,” Hasse said.
Hasse Construction Co. has been keeping track of the project on their Facebook page and website. Be sure to follow their progress and explore some of their others. The walking beam furnace project is expected to finish in the last quarter of 2020.