Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) has decided to increase the use of domestically made refractory goods across its integrated steel plants. In step with this initiative, the IISCO Steel Plant recently organized a webinar in Burnpur with domestic refractory manufacturers from different regions to explore the opportunities for " improving domestic refractory use in steel plants both in terms of quality and quantity," an official statement said.
Refractories are essential materials used by the steel industry in the internal linings of blast furnaces and converters used for steel making, in vessels for holding and transporting metals, in furnaces for heating steel before further processing etc.
A large amount of imported refractory is actually used in steel plant activities in India. The goal of this webinar was to change the emphasis from imported refractory to domestically produced refractory. The webinar entitled 'Refractories in Integrated Steel Plants: Opportunities and Challenges for Domestic Manufacturers' was attended by all SAIL steel plants as well as a huge proportion of domestic refractory manufacturers.
In an attempt to optimize locally manufactured refractories, SAIL is taking a range of steps. "The government's emphasis on Atmanirbhar Bharat is an incentive for domestic refractory producers and can mutually benefit the domestic steel industry," the statement said.
During the webinar, it was emphasized that this is an incentive for domestic refractory producers to meet with domestic requirements. For this, they will have ample opportunity to invest in Research and development activities and develop alternative refractory products for which SAIL will provide the platform for trial. The current & future requirements for refractory products and challenges faced by integrated steel plants in the adoption of indigenous refractory products were discussed at length in the webinar. The goal of this discussion was to provide a shared forum to address the requirements of each other in order to realize the vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat and to encourage the idea of ‘vocal for local’.