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Tata Steel makes energy and CO2 savings with digital technology

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Cutting-edge digital technology, which captures 1,000 data points every 10 seconds, is giving Tata Steel technicians an uninterrupted 3D view of the material being laid into the top of its two Port Talbot blast furnaces saving costs, energy and CO2.

The market-leading ‘Topscan’ technology has the potential to save the company millions of pounds every year by reducing the amount of coke required in the furnaces, and will reduce CO2 emissions by at least 50,000 tonnes annually. The technology will also play a major role in improving the furnaces’ stability and efficiency.

Tata Steel UK has the ambition to reduce all CO2 emissions by 30% by 2030 and be a CO2 neutral steelmaker by 2045 – in support of the UK’s ambition to be net-zero by 2050.

Tata Steel Blast Furnace Technical Manager, Aaron Parsons, said: “This latest £1M investment on Blast Furnace 5 complements a similar investment last year on Blast Furnace 4 and is a major step forward for us.

“The Topscan system consists of a set of radars, which take a full surface scan of the iron ore and metallurgical coke being laid into each furnace, every 10 seconds. Computer modelling then gives us a really clear, finite view of the raw materials at the start of their journey through the furnace.

“That’s really important to us because the specific way in which we lay materials in the furnace is our main method of controlling gas flow up from the hot air blast through the raw materials.

“Over time, we can make tweaks to the distribution, allowing us to make the most efficient use of the hot gases and yield really big savings, both in terms of coke usage and CO2.”

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