Brazilian steel producer Gerdau recently implemented a comprehensive process optimization and quality control solution from Primetals Technologies at the continuous slab caster No. 3 in Ouro Branco, Brazil. With a history of over 100 years, Gerdau is Brazil’s largest steel producer and one of the world’s most prominent suppliers of specialized steel. Gerdau operates in nine countries and produces steel for the agricultural, automotive, construction, distribution, energy, industrial, and mining markets.
Various Expert Systems
Gerdau operates three continuous casters at its Ouro Branco site. At continuous caster No. 3, the old Level 2 automation system at continuous caster No. 3 has now been replaced by the CC Optimizer, a process optimization solution from Primetals Technologies. Additionally, several expert systems will control and optimize various plant parts, including the Speed Expert, Nozzle Expert, Mold Expert, and Through-Process Quality Control (TPQC).
The Mold Expert detects and prevents breakouts while analyzing the casting process in the mold. TPQC is an integrated quality control system that stores relevant production data for quality assessments and runs failure analyses. In addition, it derives improvement measures from the data and highlights these on preconfigured dashboards. As a result, this system helps to increase process stability and end-product quality.
Subscription Process Optimization Solutions
The new systems operate on virtualized servers through a software subscription model. Primetals Technologies provides regular updates and support for the recently installed systems as part of a new subscription model, meaning the process optimization solutions are always up to date. The team from Primetals Technologies has heavily expanded its subscription offers over the past year, and the portfolio of software subscriptions is wide-ranging.
This project will virtualize all of Gerdau’s servers, and all necessary hardware, including the operating systems, will be managed in a central data center. Virtual servers and a central data center enable lifecycle management of the server infrastructure, ensure fast scaling of services, and shorten the support team’s response time.