EVRAZ’ R&D System
In 2020, EVRAZ announced the creation of an integrated system of R&D centres to develop innovative products and solutions. It builds on existing R&D capacity and many projects were already in the pipeline. During the year, the R&D centres continued to work on key product areas and meeting customer requirements from the early stage of development to the final certification phase. The product development process is designed to understand client needs and unlock new market opportunities.
R&D requires significant time and resources. EVRAZ’ product development process takes place in close connection with external partners, including laboratories, scientific institutions and universities to benefit from the latest breakthroughs in the field. The Group collaborates with its customers to accelerate the process of testing and certifying products, as well as to bring them to the market, from short-term improvements to new product launches.
EVRAZ’ R&D system is designed to make full use of the product and geographical expertise of the centres. The Moscow office focuses on managing the product portfolio. The North American centre specialises in the portfolio from the Group’s US and Canadian plants and has expertise in developing high-quality line pipes, OCTG and rail products capable of withstanding the harshest environmental conditions. R&D experts in Switzerland and Tula, Russia, focus on the use of vanadium in steels and the development of new recovery technologies respectively. At NTMK, the centre concentrates on expanding the product portfolio for wheels, beams and grinding balls and is expanding its expertise to the hardening of rail heads. At ZSMK, the centre focuses on premium rail products for the Russian and export market.
EVRAZ R&D Centres
EVRAZ North America
New! R&D across EVRAZ North America has been reorganised into a single function. This newly formed structure allows for better resource and knowledge sharing and covers all product lines: line-pipe, OCTG, plates, rails and long products.
EVRAZ Vanadium R&D centre (East Metals AG, Zug)
New! Established in June 2020, the Vanadium R&D centre is promoting vanadium usage in the steel industry through cooperation with world-class research organisations, in order to promote sustainable and diversified demand for vanadium from the global steel industry.
Steels that are microalloyed with vanadium exhibit remarkable properties that are able to address several current challenges facing the industry. Given recent research and industrial trials, the Group has the capacity to redesign steels from the nanoscale up.
To bring these benefits to market, EVRAZ’ vanadium research is shaping steelmaking processes by coupling vanadium’s unique properties with appropriate metallurgical process designs. This results in microstructures that are precisely tailored to specific market needs and which can be produced efficiently and economically by modern steel mills.
At EVRAZ’ ZSMK R&D centre, activities include the optimisation of the chemical composition, improvement of rail properties as well as the development of manufacturing processes and regulatory documentation for new railway products. The R&D team also carries out testing and monitoring of rail performance directly on the tracks of customers and works with leading research institutions.
The NTMK plant has the most versatile product mix within the EVRAZ group, producing high-quality beams, rails, wheels, grinding balls, merchant bars and other long products for the Russian market and export destinations. Group experts have continuously expanded the product mix using the New Product Development process along with R&D work on rail head hardening technology and increasing the mechanical properties of larger sized beams and grinding balls. The requirements for wheels are steadily growing. As a result, a new R&D centre with the necessary research and testing equipment is being considered to meet future demand.
EVRAZ’ Vanady Tula R&D centre was created to support technological improvements at the plant and to develop new technologies. Located at the hydrometallurgical plant, its primary focus is the improvement of vanadium recovery technology, along with production of value-added products, such as electrolytes for vanadium redox flow batteries. In addition, it is developing chemical and hydrometallurgical technologies for extraction of other valuable elements not currently produced by EVRAZ.
Beam Eco system
EVRAZ, in partnership with leading Russian Scientific institutes (CNIIISK, CNIIST), and engineering companies (including Ferrostroy), are creating new ideas for using beams and other innovative solutions. In addition, it focuses on implementing completed R&D projects in design and construction practices, through trials, development of codes and pilot projects.
Vanadium projects with Swerim and ASPPRC
The Advanced Steel Production and Processing Center of Colorado School of Mines (ASPPRC) is a platform where leading global steel producers, major steel consumers from the automotive and energy industries and the leading suppliers from the steel industry can meet with world class research staff and faculty to collaborate on general steelmaking and steel applications.
A bilateral R&D programme has been founded at Sweden’s Swerim, the joint research centre of the Swedish steel and metals industry and academic metallurgical institutions. The programme covers the vital needs of steel producers and steel consumers in Europe.