Nut Coke Project, Whyalla Steelworks

WGA AU | Wallbridge Gilbert Aztec - Photo: Nut Coke Project

The Project

Nut Coke was previously added to the Blast Furnace through the ferrous weigh system and charged via the ferrous check weigh hoppers and skips. With a proposed increase in production, the ferrous check weigh hoppers did not have sufficient volumetric capacity to hold both the Nut Coke and ferrous charges.

The project involved the installation of a stand-alone Nut Coke Addition system that charges up to 500kg of Nut Coke per ferrous charge direct to the skips, thus bypassing the ferrous charge weigh system and enabling an increase in iron production from the Blast Furnace.

Elements of the project included a Stock bin with two belt feeders, a belt conveyor, a primary weigh hopper, a vibrating feeder, a sidewall incline conveyor, a diverter gate, two check weigh hoppers, chutework, structural steelwork, footings, electrical, controls and dust extraction ductwork.

Technical Solutions

WGA completed the mechanical, structural and electrical detailed design of the project, including production of 200 engineering drawings to client standards.

A construction sequence was developed to insert the new 31 tonne stock bin into the space between existing bins. The bin volume was maximised within the available space using a twin outlet configuration. Similarly, an innovative construction sequence was developed to install platform steelwork below the existing bins and highline, using a trolley on the scale car rails to transport the new structure into position.

Some of the challenges overcome by WGA included; designing around a continuously operating plant, extremely restricted space for new equipment and structures, limited plant shutdowns (48 hours every 4 months), a short skip loading cycle, aging infrastructure, accurate weighing and handling of small batches.

Client Focus

The brownfields nature of this project required close coordination between the client stakeholders and WGA’s mechanical, structural and electrical teams. This multi-discipline coordination was facilitated through the use of 3D modelling and 3D laser scanning by WGA, along with regular safety and constructability reviews held on site.

WGA was also engaged to provide the PLC programming for the control system integration of the Nut Coke project. This required close consultation with the client in order to make changes to the existing plant control system.

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