ArcelorMittal announces the launch, in Florange, of the first line in the world to produce extra-wide Usibor® for the automotive industry
Florange, 14 February 2013 – Investments of more than EUR 7 million in the ArcelorMittal Florange site mean that the cold-rolling mill now owns the first processing line in the world to produce Usibor®Alusi® steel in widths of up to 1,850 mm, larger than the 1,550 mm currently available on the market. There are plans for additional investments of EUR 55 million in the Florange site to further strengthen its competitiveness.
This world first gives both the Florange site and the ArcelorMittal group a massive competitive advantage. This crucial new area of production strengthens the position of ArcelorMittal Atlantique et Lorraine in the Usibor® market which is an extremely high-growth area.
Adapting the Florange galvanising line to the production of extra-wide Usibor®
The galvanising line at the Florange site, with investments of EUR 7 million, is now fully adapted to the requirements for the production of extra-wide Usibor® Alusi®.
Testing for certification began in December 2012 amongst the company’s largest customers and the first certifications are to be confirmed in the first quarter of 2013. Commercial production will begin immediately subsequent to this.
Usibor®: a very high-growth market
The Usibor® market is experiencing continuous growth and has benefited from very strong demand from car manufacturers which are widely using hot stamping in order to achieve lighter vehicles.
Usibor® steel meets the requirements of customers in the automotive industry to reduce the weight of their vehicles while improving their safety in order to pass the Euro NCAP crash tests.
Usibor® also complies with environmental standards. For instance, the manufacture of Usibor® releases less CO2 than does aluminium. Furthermore, cars manufactured from Usibor®consume less energy because they are lighter and therefore release less CO2.
Finally, the technical characteristics of the product facilitate stamping, which is critical for car manufacturers.
World 1st: 1,650 mm wide Usibor® Alusi®coil produced during testing in December 2012 (Photo credit: C2 images)