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World’s Largest HBI Plant Begins Operation; Siemens and Midrex Start Up a 1.4-Million mt/a Direct-Reduction Plant at Lebedinsky GOK, Russia

(PresseBox) (München, ) Siemens Metals Technologies and consortium partner Midrex Technologies, Inc. started up the world´s largest hot-briquetted-iron (HBI) production facility at Lebedinsky Mining and Processing Integrated Works (Lebedinsky GOK) near Gubkin, Russia. The new plant has a rated capacity of 1.4 million metric tons of HBI per year. The contract was awarded to Siemens Metals Technologies and Midrex in February 2005. The project was completed within 30 months and the plant started up in late October 2007. Performance guarantees were achieved in December 2007.

The new direct-reduction facility, Lebedinsky GOK II, was built near the city of Gubkin, located about 700 kilometers south of Moscow in the Belgorod region. Iron ores, comprised mostly of magnetite, are first concentrated and processed to DR-grade pellets. These pellets are then fed into a Midrex shaft furnace where they are reduced to metallic iron followed by discharging into hot-briquetting machines, producing HBI with a metallization degree exceeding 93 percent. The briquettes have an apparent density exceeding 5.0 g/cm3 and are well suited for transport due to the low quantity of fines generated during handling.

The consortium was responsible for the supply of the material-handling system for the iron oxide (including day bins and screening equipment), the Midrex shaft furnace (including inserts and refractories), the 17-bay Midrex reformer with recuperator, the hot-discharge system (including product-discharge chamber and briquetter feed legs), the hot-briquetting system (including briquetting machines and HBI-cooling system), process gas compressors, the power stack system, the product-screening station, electrics, instrumentation, automation and utilities as well as for advisory services and training. Briquetting machines were supplied by Maschinenfabrik Köppern GmbH & Co. KG.

Lebedinsky GOK is a company of Metalloinvest Holding – the largest mining group in Russia. The company is a producer of high-quality iron-ore concentrates, pellets and HBI for the domestic and international markets. The feed for the new HBI plant consist of 100% pellets produced from Lebedinsky GOK iron ore.

Additional information on the Midrex direct-reduction process is available at and

Further information on solutions for steel works, rolling mills and processing lines is available at