Investments in maintenance will amount to $385 million, and the unit will be put back into operation in June 2024

South Korean steelmaker POSCO started maintenance of blast furnace No. 4 in Pohang in late April and plans to resume production at this unit at the end of June this year, Kallanish reports.

Investments in the modernization of BF No. 4 will amount to KRW 530 billion ($385 million). The overhaul is aimed at restoring productivity and establishing stable production by modernizing old equipment, improving safety by increasing durability, and using big data and artificial intelligence to create an intelligent blast furnace melting system.

The unit was built in 1981 and later modernized by POSCO in 2007.

The capacity of blast furnace No. 4 at the Pohang steel plant is 5.3 million tons per year. In addition, the plant will carry out a six-month maintenance of the 3.5 million tons per annum hot strip mill No. 1.

Despite the fact that the company reduced steel production in the first quarter due to the reconstruction of the South Korean BF, the use of semi-finished product stocks helped maintain production and sales at the level of the previous quarter, the company noted. The company’s steel production and sales in January-March amounted to 8.66 million tons and 8.22 million tons, respectively.

As GMK Center reported, earlier this year, POSCO began construction of a 2.5 million tons per annum electric arc furnace at its Gwangyang plant. It is planned to be completed by the end of 2025, and the official operation of the EAF will begin in 2026. The total investment in the project is estimated at KRW 600 billion (over $451 million).