ArcelorMittal’s Cleveland Ohio Plant Hosts U.S. DOE’s Fan In-Plant Training

By Sachin Nimbalkar on Nov 30, 2015

On October 19th and 20th, Better Plants partner, ArcelorMittal, hosted its first Fan In-Plant Training (INPLT) at its Cleveland plant. Over the course of two days, a team of 20 ArcelorMittal staff, and representatives from Dow Chemical Company and Owens Corning, dug into fan energy efficiency opportunities. The aim of the fan system training was to support ArcelorMittal in their energy reduction efforts by training ArcelorMittal individuals on how to perform energy assessments and then identify and quantify energy efficiency improvement opportunities.

The Cleveland plant covers 950 acres, with buildings spanning more than seven million square feet. Products made at this location are hot-rolled, cold-rolled and hot-dip galvanized sheet and semi-finished (slabs) and markets include automotive, service centers, converters and tubular applications. At the INPLT, the team explored benefits of fan system improvement projects by examining fan performance characteristics and the measurement of critical system performance data. 20 individuals (pictured below) participated in the Fan System INPLT training, including attendees from ArcelorMittal’s Burns Harbor, Cleveland, Dofasco, Monessen, Steelton, Tubarão (Brazil), and R&D East Chicago, and Weirton facilities. There were also three participants from Owen Corning and one participant from Dow Chemical Company. 

The fan in-plant training particularly focused on:

  • Fundamentals of fans and systems
  • How fan performance and system curves are developed
  • Fan selection and application principles
  • Fan control strategies and measures that improve efficiency
  • Proper maintenance practices to achieve good reliability
  • Mechanical and aerodynamic fan vibration problems and potential remedial measures

“Motor-driven systems account for 21 percent of industrial primary energy use consuming nearly 2,360 trillion BTU of energy annually, meaning motor intensive businesses can achieve dramatic reductions in energy usage through sound energy management practices and the use of premium efficiency motor-driven equipment,” said Vern Martin a senior mechanical engineer and partner at FLOWCARE Engineering Inc.

During the training, attendees received instructions in data gathering and evaluation techniques for establishing whether a specific fan system is a candidate for energy optimization. The use of forms and tools such as the DOE’s Fan System Assessment Tool (FSAT) software was included. The training also incorporated the use of an instrumented fan model, variable frequency drive and system components to demonstrate fan principles and provide hands-on learning opportunities. Exercises were conducted at various points in the training to give attendees the opportunity to practice what they learned.

ArcelorMittal has set a company goal of reducing energy intensity by 10 percent over 10 years within ArcelorMittal’s 17 U.S. facilities. Larry Fabina, manager, continuous improvement, ArcelorMittal USA said that to achieve this ambitious goal, significant opportunities at all ArcelorMittal plants can come from making their motor-driven systems more energy efficient along with improving energy performance of furnaces, ovens, and reheat furnaces.

“Two years ago, we joined the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Plants Program which has provided us with valuable energy training, new technologies and goal-setting tactics,” Fabina said. “We’ve set a 10 percent energy reduction goal over 10 years – looking for an average of one percent in reductions per year. This is an ambitious goal that will take all of our efforts to achieve.”