June 16, 2006

Tata Steel to use dry quenching technology for better environment management

Tata Steel believes, as always, that better environment management leads to superior and long lasting corporate performance

Tata Steel, in collaboration with NEDO (New Energy & Industrial Technology Development Organisation), Japan, has embarked upon a new approach to conserve both heat energy and fresh water, and abate air and water pollution associated with the conventional wet quenching process during manufacture of metallurgical coke. A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today by K Koizawa, executive director, NEDO, Dr T Mukherjee, deputy managing director (steel), Tata Steel, and Farooqui, joint secretary, department of economic affairs, ministry of finance, government of India, in the presence of officials of ministry of steel, to use dry quenching technology for cooling of coke. The new technology will use nitrogen gas to recover the sensible heat of hot coke, and generate steam which would be used for power generation.

According to this MoU, NEDO will contribute the equipment produced in Japan, under the Green Aid Plan of the government of Japan and Tata Steel will set up the plant and disseminate the know-how to other integrated steel plants. The project cost is estimated to be Rs180 crore. This is the second time that Tata Steel has received Japanese technology from NEDO under the Green Aid Plan.

The majority of the electrical power generated in India is by burning coal. For producing 1 MW of power in a conventional coal fired power plant, as much as 6500 tonnes of green house gas (carbon dioxide) would be produced per year. In an integrated steel plant, huge quantity of heat may get wasted in direct and indirect cooling. In the conventional coke making process in steel plants, red hot coke is pushed out of coke ovens and quenched with large quantity of water resulting in evaporation of water into the atmosphere. Naturally the heat energy is lost in the process. In addition, quenching of coke results in air and water pollution.

The coke dry quenching (CDQ) process offers distinct advantages of sensible heat recovery, conservation of water and zero air and water pollution. This is an established technology, popular in the more advanced countries. The dry coke produced in the process enhances the productivity of blast furnaces, the work horses of integrated steel plants. Annually, one million cubic metres of water will be saved and, almost three quarters of million tonnes of steam will be generated for use in power plants. This technology, commonly known as CDQ, would have a favourable impact on climate change issues being addressed under the Kyoto Protocol. The carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere will come down by 140,000 tonnes per year.

Tata Steel believes, as always, that better environment management leads to superior and long lasting corporate performance. Its steel works, mines and collieries, and the town services in Jamshedpur are ISO 14001 certified for environment management. Under the Green Millennium Countdown programme, the company planted and ensured 1.5 million surviving trees in its mines and all other operating units.