August 10, 2022

US Steel plans to build $150 million DR-grade pellet production system on Iron Range

DULUTH, MN — A major announcement from US Steel Tuesday, as the company announced plans to invest $150 million to build its first DR-grade pellet production system on the iron line this fall.

US Steel made the announcement during a presentation on Tuesday morning.

Company spokespeople say the new DR-grade pellet system will be located at one of its two Minnesota mining facilities, either Keetac in Keewatin or Minntac in Mountain Iron, but have not specify exactly which one.

“This will allow one of the company’s existing pellet plants to not only create DR-grade pellets, but also retain the ability to continue producing blast-furnace-grade pellets,” spokespersons for the company wrote. the company in a press release.

DR grade pellets would be a new product for US Steel.

“DR grade pellets are an essential raw material for making iron in a direct iron reduction (DRI) or hot briquetted iron (HBI) process that ultimately feeds into EAF steelmaking. Once complete, the company would have the option of selling the new pellets to third-party DRI/HBI producers or using them to power a potential future DRI or HBI facility.

The timeline for the project is largely dependent on state and local support and the permitting process, company spokespersons said.

U.S. Steel also on Tuesday announced plans to have SunCoke Energy, Inc., a raw materials processing and handling company, acquire Granite City Works’ two blast furnaces in Illinois and build a pig iron production plant. granular crude of 2 million tons.

SunCoke would provide US Steel with access to all pig iron production for the next ten years.

US Steel would supply the iron ore needed to produce the pig iron.

Since the iron ore would come from US Steel’s own mines, US Steel expects to see a “significant” cost advantage.

This pig iron could be used by EAFs and is expected to supply US Steel’s growing EAF fleet.

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