[metaslider id=8591]Essar Steel, one of India’s leading integrated steel producers with an annual production capability of 10 million tpa, has commissioned an integrated pellet complex in Odisha in Eastern India, a company release announced. The new plant comprises an iron ore beneficiation facility at Dabuna (Keonjhar), a 6-million tpa pellet plant at Paradeep (Jagatsinghpur), and a 253-km long slurry pipe line with 12 million tpa carrying capacity connecting the beneficiation facility and the pellet plant.

Essar has invested around Rs. 6,000 crore in setting up the integrated complex.

The beneficiation facility is designed to use low-grade iron ore fines. The slurry pipeline is the most cost effective and fastest mode of transportation that eases significant pressure on rail and road network, with reduced carbon foot print and minimal environmental impact.

With the commissioning of this integrated complex, Essar Steel has become the largest pellet producer in the country with an annual pellet production capacity of 14 million tpa – 8 million tpa at Vizag complex in Andhra Pradesh and 6 million tpa at Odisha complex.

A further 6-million tpa pellet plant at Paradeep, Odisha, is scheduled to be commissioned shortly, including the corresponding upscaling of the beneficiation plant, taking the annual pellet production capacity of the Odisha complex to 12 million tpa.

Dedicating the facility to the nation, Essar Steel Chairman Shashi Ruia said, “Essar has always put a lot of emphasis on sustainable development. The way this state-of-the-art complex has been designed puts maximum emphasis on achieving our goals in Odisha. It is a matter of pride that Indian engineers have delivered this challenging project keeping the balance between growth and sustainability.”

Captive infrastructure
According to Essar Steel, the Odisha pellet complex is backed by infrastructure that includes a 120-MW power plant by Essar Power and a captive berth at Paradeep Port set up by Essar Ports. The pellet plant is connected by a 9.5-km conveyor belt to the fully mechanised berth at Paradeep Port owned and operated by Essar Ports. This enables seamless transportation and loading of pellets from the plant into the ship.

Firdose Vandrevala, Executive Vice Chairman, Essar Steel India, said, “It is our policy to make a meaningful contribution in the development of the state and the communities we operate in. With the commissioning of this integrated facility, we will be putting this policy into practice. We are committed to a long, sustainable and fruitful partnership for the growth and prosperity of the state.”

Why Odisha?
Odisha possesses the largest reserves of iron ore and has been the largest producer of iron ore in the country. A large part of this production is in the form of fines which can be used in iron making only after converting into pellets. Paradeep is endowed with a deep draft all-weather port and is strategically located with access to both eastern and western markets.

Rajendra Mittal, Chief Executive Officer – Odisha, Essar Steel, said, “We are happy that we have commissioned the pellet facility, capable of using low grade iron ore fines to produce value added product, a critical input for iron/steel making.”

Essar companies with a pellet capacity of 27 million tpa would be amongst the world’s top three pellet producers once its 7-million tpa pellet plant in Minnesota, USA, becomes operational by the second half of next year.

What are pellets?
Pellets are a critical and reliable raw material for iron making and find usage across all iron making processes including blast furnace, corex and DRI. Iron ore fines cannot be generally used directly in their physical form and the only way to use the fines is to convert them into pellets.

MAJOR PELLET PRODUCERS

Producer

Capacity (million tpa)

Vale, Brazil

54

Samarco, Brazil

30

Essar

27 *

LKAB, Sweden

27

IOC, Canada

13**

GIIC, Bahrain

11

* 8 million tpa – Vizag; 12 million tpa –  Odisha;
7 million tpa – Minnesota, USA
**Source: Websearch

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