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1927
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05 january
Flux mining

In 1927 a decision was made to build a quarry to cover the demand for flux from the Lipetsk iron and steel industry.

21 august
Quarry construction

A standalone shop, Studenovsky Quarry Mines, was set up in 1928.

On 21 August 1928, the Regulations on the Studenovskoye Mining Administration were developed. M. A. Titov was the first to be appointed Head of Administration. Construction of the quarry began.

33,000 tonnes of limestone was hand-mined in 1928.

15 april
The “Shock Work Five-Year Plan”

The first five-year plan was developed in April 1929. The large-scale industrial construction programme included plans for a cast iron plant in Lipetsk, along with steelmaking plants in Magnitogorsk, Kuznetsk and Krivoi Rog.

The construction project for the new steelmaking plant in Lipetsk was designed at the Leningrad State Institute for Designing Iron and Steel Plants (Lengipromez). That was the time when the name of the construction project, Lipetskstroy, first occurred in documentation and in print.

In 1929 the Moscow Geological Administration estimated the reserves of the Studenovskoye fluxing limestone deposit at 9.7 million cubic metres and ranked it the largest in the European part of the USSR.

01 january
Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works project

In January 1930, a delegation of Lipetsk workers met with J. Vareikis, Secretary of the Voronezh Regional Committee of the AUCP(b) of Central Black Earth Region to speed up a decision-making process with regard to the start of construction of the new Lipetsk Region steelmaking plant. The technical council of Lengipromez finally approved the project specification for the Lipetsk plant in October, followed by its validation by the technical council of the Steel association.

The first move was to approve a construction site in the woodlands on the left bank of the Voronezh River in the vicinity of Lipetsk and roughly shape a plan to build a company town (a so-called ‘Socialist town’) to house 250,000 people. The project outlined limits of the town and development of its transport infrastructure. Since the river banks were fairly high, metro lines were to be built in both directions.

In mid-October, the Lipetskstroy administration started to function in an official capacity. P. Alexandrov was appointed interim head.

From P. Alexandrov’s memoirs: ... once it had been set up, Lipetskstroy was housed in a building in Lenin Street which accommodated all its facilities and nearly all its employees... The hostel was set up in the same building too. We all lived there, which allowed us to work day and night. ... in early 1931 I asked to be replaced by another person, someone stronger and more experienced in steelmaking.”

Rock drilling equipment was installed at the Studenovskoye deposit site in 1930. Manual blast-hole drilling was replaced by air-drilling using rock drills. A compressor plant was also built.

According to the “On the Iron and Steel Industry” decree issued by the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR, it was proposed that construction of the Lipetsk cast iron plant supplied by the Lipetsk District’s ore deposits would begin in 1931.

Projected annual production output of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works (NLMZ)

Coke 1,300,000 t

Blast furnace production about 1 m t

Open-hearth production 800,000 t

Rolled products 700,000 t

Pipe casting 130,000 t

Power plant 80,000 kW

Number of workers at the plant 12,000

01 march
Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works (NLMZ) construction

Construction of the steelmaking plant in Lipetsk began in March 1931. Yan Berzin was in charge of the project. After a pine forest had been cleared and stumps pulled, workers began by digging wells of drinking water and building a mechanical saw mill. The second facility to be built was a power plant. In summer, over 10 km of railway track was laid from Kazinka station to the Lipetskstroy construction site. Construction work of the main production site began.

Lipetskstroy Trust is the oldest and one of the biggest construction companies in Lipetsk Region. It was founded in 1931 to perform construction work at NLMZ. The population of Lipetsk was actively involved in this “shock work” construction project. The trust was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labour and the Order of the October Revolution for its achievements in construction.

Lipetskstroy Trust has been operating in the construction business for over 80 years and has been repeatedly recognised as the best construction company in Lipetsk. Over the last few years, the trust has built more than 800,000 square metres of housing in Lipetsk.

Construction work was undertaken using shovels, hand-barrows, wheel-barrows and diggers. These tools were instrumental to completing a lot of heavy earth work to break the ground for building blast furnaces, stoves, a cogeneration plant building and ore stock yard. A metal plate featuring the name of the blast furnace and the year of construction start was embedded under the foundation. Concrete slabs were installed for blast furnace No. 1 on 26 September 1931.

Although in capacity terms the soon-to-be Novolipetsk plant did lag behind its bigger brothers – the Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works (MMK) and the Kuznetsk Metallurgical Plant, its design incorporated state-of-the-art technologies of Russian steelmaking. The main blast furnace shop included two furnaces, each 930 cubic metres in volume. Their total design capacity was 500,000 tonnes of pig iron per year. Remarkably, the blast furnace shop didn’t employ workers in roles such as cager, roller, charger or ditcher. These jobs were simply redundant due to the high level of mechanisation. For example, furnace charging and ore storage facilities were to be fully mechanised.

01 august
Active construction of NLMZ

There were 4,000 people working at the construction site by the end of 1932. A year later, the number of construction workers and installers reached 8,000. Training of professional personnel began in February 1932 by the faculty of a basic workschool, which offered the opportunity to obtain a profession in two years’ time, such as assistant steam turbine operator, blast furnace keeper, gas watchman or electrician. The first batch to graduate numbered 180 people. By the time the first blast furnace was commissioned, 460 foremen, technicians and qualified workers had been trained there; 1,525 people had attended classes where the basics of technical safety had been taught, while some of the employees had done internships at iron foundry facilities in Ukraine and Tula. The most skilled steelworkers came from other plants.

Construction of the plant was ahead of schedule.

From Kommuna, Voronezh newspaper (1 August 1932): “Installers at Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works have won the day and in a big way: the 76-tonne skip bridge for blast furnace No. 1 was installed in just 7 hours. Lipetskstroy employees have broken the record. The installation of a skip bridge in the largest construction projects in the South and Urals took at least 12 hours.”

Hand haulage at the Studenovskoye deposit was replaced with horse haulage in 1932. Maria Shchukina was the first to work as a horse driver. Later on, small locomotives arrived.

01 january
Equipment installation at NLMZ

The construction of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works intensified in 1933. Blast furnaces, the cogeneration plant and a blower house were swiftly built, as well as a station, a garage, a brick canteen building, a food store and the plant’s central office.

Komsomol members of Energostroy, the organisation which built the cogeneration plant, blower house, water supply and sewer systems of the plant, suggested issuing “earthwork bonds”. The idea was as follows. Before the first frost hits, construction workers had to complete earthwork operations, removing 40,000 cubic metres of ground. The diggers were unable to do it alone. To help this cause, “five CBM bonds” were issued. Hundreds of Lipetsk residents responded to the call for help. The secretary of the party cell at the cogeneration plant, where work was in progress, collected a heap of slips recording cubic metres of ground removed under the loan initiative. The “earthwork loan” was floated over 6 weeks. This was a substantial support for workers, which enabled them to speed up the construction of the cogeneration plant. A prize drawing was held for bond holders in early November, and the lucky ones won bicycles, suits, soap or portable gramophones.

Number of improvement ideas put forward by “shock workers” at the Lipetsk construction site and plant employees. 1933 figures:

Improvement ideas Total Workers Engineers and technicians
Submitted 597 351 246
Reviewed 528 316 212
Implemented 198 124 74
Rewarded 137 85 52
Savings from implementation (RUB) 353,235 126,115 227,120
07 november
Launch of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works

In April 1934, lining of blast furnace No. 1 was completed and a 24,000 kWh turbine generator unit was installed at the cogeneration plant.

In accordance with the joint resolution issued by the city and regional authorities as well as the Municipal District Committee of the AUCP(b), dated 22 October 1934, it was required that “Comrade Berzin and the Party Committee (represented by Comrade Altukhova) make the most of the time left prior to the blast furnace launch, not only to test mechanisms but primarily focus on their operation at full load during these days, thoroughly inspect them and eliminate the slightest defects of all units and mechanisms which service the blast furnace.”

On 29 October 1934, the plant’s heart started beating as the 24,000 kWh combined heat and power plant was put in operation.

Hand charging of blast furnace No. 1 with coal, firewood and coke was completed at noon on 1 November.

On 3 November, the whole plant was launched for a test run, by order of Yan Berzin. Its operation lasted for 48 hours.

The first blast furnace was commissioned on 6 November.

The officials in charge of the construction project and an authorised representative of the People's Commissariat of Heavy Industry reported: “On 6 November at 3:35 p.m., the Lipetskstroy blast furnace was blown in. The 115th blast furnace in the USSR was put in operation. We are mobilising all our efforts for successful utilisation of the highly-mechanised blast furnace.”

The furnace produced its first melt, 64 tonnes of pig iron, at 7:30 p.m. on 7 November 1934. This milestone operation was carried out by blast furnace keepers I. Shmidt (who had previously launched four furnaces at Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works), P. Liznev and N. Milyushin, gas watchmen N. Sochnev and I. Ivanisov, pig-casting operator P. Kharkov, plumber S. Krushinsky, and engineers G. Shabanov and S. Udovitsky.

After the blast furnace had been commissioned, Yan Berzin proceeded to develop the steelmaking plant. In Lipetsk, he was always in the thick of it: served as a member of the Presidium of the Lipetsk City Council, held public meetings with Lipetsk people, welcomed legendary polar explorers, pilots Mikhail Vodopyanov and SS Chelyuskin radio man Ernst Krenkel on 5 July 1934, when they visited the city. Berzin was well-known in Voronezh, the capital of the region. During the First Regional Congress of Soviets in January 1935, he became a member of the Executive Committee of the Regional Soviet and was elected as a delegate to the All-Russian and All-Union Congresses of Soviets.

NLMZ and Lipetskstroy construction site. 1934. Installation of a dust catcher in BF-1.

Four elevators, one for each site, were built in 1934 at the Studenovskoye deposit. They were used to lift 1.5-tonne cars with fluxing limestone from the quarry to the ramps. A railway track was laid to the ramps.

21 may
The Stakhanovite movement at NLMZ

In the first quarter of 1935, the plant produced 47,000 tonnes of pig iron while in the fourth quarter the figure went up to 68,000 tonnes. Blast furnace No. 1 produced its 1,000th melt on 21 May 1935. The plant outstripped its annual target by 1,200 tonnes.

A year after the first blast furnace had been put in operation, on 4 November 1935, blast furnace No. 2 produced its first pig iron. Cast iron was the plant’s primary product before the war. It was supplied to machine-building plants in the Central and Southern parts of the country. NLMZ met its 1935 target displaying the following performance: blast furnace No. 1 produced 217,206 tonnes of pig iron, or 100.6% of the target, while blast furnace No. 2 produced 30,553 tonnes, or 101.8% of the target.

In autumn 1935, the Stakhanovite movement spread across the entire country, initiated by local resident Alexei Stakhanov. The shock worker movement at NLMZ was rapidly growing. In November 1935, the plant had 194 Stakhanovites. A month later, there were already 432 of them.

The Stakhanovite movement was mass movement of Alexei Stakhanov's followers, pioneers of Socialist production in the USSR – workers, collective farmers, engineers and technicians – aimed to improve labour efficiency through implementation of new equipment and technologies. It was one of the types of shock work, the initial and most widespread form of Socialist competition.

The Stakhanovite movement was initiated by Alexei Stakhanov, a coal miner at the Tsentralnaya-Irmino mine in Kadievka (now Stakhanov), who, on the night of 30–31 August 1935, mined 107 tonnes of coal in 5 hours and 45 minutes, with a standard mining quota of 7 tonnes.

Stakhanov was able to demonstrate this sensational performance by switching from the individual approach to the work of the miners that was previously used to a teamwork approach with task sharing. Alexei used only a jackhammer to mine, followed closely by two other miners who widened the coal stall and strengthened its walls.

Encouraged by the propaganda and enjoying financial support from the Communist Party of the USSR, the Stakhanovite movement shortly swept through all industries; transport, construction, agriculture and others; spreading across the entire country.

Stakhanovite shifts

In 1935, operation at NLMZ was totally based on Stakhanovite shifts which lasted for between one and five days. In their reports and statements the shock workers said that they were “paving the way, discovering untapped reserves for transition to Stakhanovite months and conversion of the whole plant into a Stakhanovite facility.”

600 Stakhanovites worked at the plant by 1935. NLMZ met its 1935 target, displaying the following performance: blast furnace No. 1 produced 217,206 tonnes of pig iron, or 100.6% of the target, while blast furnace No. 2 produced 30,553 tonnes, or 101.8% of the target.

The subsidy was reduced by 1,468,000 rubles over 11 months, instead of the initial figure of 1,300,000 rubles specified in the annual commitment (from the report on achievements of plant personnel presented to the Voronezh Regional Committee of the AUCP(b) after the gathering of NLMZ shock workers and Stakhanovites).

01 june
Kalinin’s visit to NLMZ

1,043 followers of Alexei Stakhanov’s approach worked efficiently at NLMZ in January 1936. In June, the plant’s performance achievements were recognised at the top national leadership level. Mikhail Kalinin , Chairman of the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union, made a visit to NLMZ.

From "Za Chugun" newspaper:

“Mikhail Kalinin inspected pig casters, hoisting equipment at the blast furnace shop, blast furnace No. 2, the Dorra sprinkling basins, the gas cleaning plant and other equipment... he was curious about the pig iron grade produced at the plant, performance in terms of the production target, the cost of pig iron, as well as... the number of employees at the plant and blast furnace shop, the number of people living on site, and construction of residential housing at the site.”

In late 1936, the plant was subsidy-independent, having made savings of 5,579,000 rubles in production and 1,755,000 rubles due to product quality.

1,200 workers, engineers and white-collar employees were covered by the technical training programme. By the new academic year, the plant built a secondary school for 880 children, a playground for 40 children, a health clinic, a nursery and a few dozen apartments for the plant’s top Stakhanovites.

03 june
Yan Berzin’s arrest

On 3 June 1937, NLMZ Director Yan Berzin spoke at the city conference on the plant’s outlook for development in the third five-year period:

“The new 1,300 cbm furnaces are to be commissioned by 1939. In technical terms, this is quite feasible... Therefore, pig iron production is planned as follows: 502,000 tonnes in 1938, 939,000 tonnes in 1939, 1,368,000 tonnes in 1940, 1,419,000 tonnes in 1941 and 1,419,000 tonnes in 1942.”

However, Berzin never had the chance to implement these plans. A warrant for his arrest was issued on 24 October 1937. He was arrested on charges brought by the so-called ’Stalin’s Shooting Lists‘, so the outcome of the investigation, the trial and verdict were all predetermined. NLMZ’s first director was executed by firing squad on 14 April 1938, the day the sentence was read by a commission of the Military Collegium of the Supreme Court of the USSR, a so-called “NKVD Troika”.

On 14 May 1957, Berzin was fully posthumously rehabilitated by the Supreme Court of the USSR, and a street in Lipetsk was named after him.

Grigory Shapanov

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1938–1939

Grigory Shapanov was born in 1886 in Ivanovo Region. On 16 February 1938, he was appointed Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. Along with development of production, he paid attention to improving the employees’ cultural standards and literacy. Under his guidance, illiteracy at the plant was eliminated entirely.

The personnel of NLMZ were awarded the Transferable Red Banner by the Plenum of the Central Committee of the Iron and Steel Industry Union of the Centre held in April 1939, for successful elimination of illiteracy. Among other employees acknowledged for their exemplary Stakhanovite performance, Grigory Shapanov was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labour, a high governmental award, by the decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR dated 26 March 1939.


01 january
Results of the second five-year period

By the end of the decade, the plant’s output was 20 times higher than in 1935. 229 members and candidate members of the AUCP(b) worked at the plant in early 1938. The largest of the party organisations were those of the blast furnace shop, cogeneration plant and railway shop.

The trade union committee of the plant became more active. In association with the mining committee of the Lipetsk iron ore mines, it organised a meeting of the Stakhanovites fr om both organisations where the participants discussed not only improvement of production output but also enhancement of ore, flux and pig iron quality. The Komsomol played a major role in achieving production targets and was actively involved in the plant’s social life.

The training facilities, which significantly enriched the operation of the plant, included a workschool, Stakhanovite courses, and classes wh ere the basics of technical safety were taught. The plant recruited young talent and encouraged steelworkers to improve their technical expertise. To support the people’s creative development and strengthen their motivation, the party promoted the best of them.

Over 40% of all workers were followers of the Stakhanovite movement in 1939. Throughout the year, the employees of three shops – the blast furnace shop, machine shop and cogeneration plant – were holders of the Transferable Red Banner of the plant.

Alongside the Stakhanovite movement’s development, the plant’s management paid special attention to optimisation and invention. Innovative initiatives became widespread when NLMZ agreed to participate in a socialist competition with Uralvagonzavod, a railway car building plant fr om Nizhny Tagil. Lipetsk steelworkers submitted more than 100 improvement ideas aimed at saving raw materials and fuel, and improving equipment operation.

The same year, the plant management started an all-out fight against illiteracy, as well as cultural and awareness-raising activities. These initiatives were supervised by Grigory Shapanov, Director of NLMZ. Later on, NLMZ personnel were awarded the Transferable Red Banner by the Plenum of the Central Committee of the Iron and Steel Industry Union of the Centre held in April 1939, for successfully eliminating illiteracy.

Fyodor Sergeev

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1939–1946

Fyodor Sergeev was born in Dnepropetrovsk. He graduated from the Dnepropetrovsk Metallurgical Institute.

He began his career in 1919 as an apprentice mechanic, then proceeded to work as an assistant machine operator, a driver and a garage manager, and also held elective positions in the Komsomol. His experience as a professional steelworker began in 1934 at the Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works, wh ere he was a shift engineer. In 1935 he was transferred to the position of Chief Technical Officer and Deputy Chief Engineer of NLMZ.

Sergeev was appointed Director of NLMZ in 1939.

Twice, in 1941 and 1942, he personally supervised the evacuation of plant equipment from Lipetsk to the Urals.

In 1942 Sergeev was appointed as an officer in charge of a fighter unit. He was awarded two Orders of the Badge of Honour, two Orders of the Red Banner of Labour and five medals, including “For Valiant Labour in the Great Patriotic War 1941–1945”, “For the Restoration of the Black Metallurgy Enterprises of the South” and “For Labour Valour”.

From 1943, Fyodor Sergeev was put in charge of the plant’s restoration. By 1944 the pig iron foundry, steel foundry and machine shops had been rebuilt and the plant had adopted technologies to produce munitions and war supplies as well as steam-water isolation valves for evacuated industrial facilities, and operation of auxiliary shops (transport, electrical and water supply shops) had been fully organised. A recreation centre was built in 1946.

Sergeev was transferred to Tula and appointed Director of Kosaya Gora Iron Works (KGIW) in 1946.


23 april
The Red Banner of NLMZ

Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works celebrated its first milestone anniversary appropriately. From the Order on the plant’s performance in 1934–1939:

On 23 April 1939 the plant was awarded the Transferable Red Banner by the Central Committee of the Iron and Steel Industry Union of the Centre, for successful elimination of illiteracy.

“6 November 1939 marks five years since our plant was launched and joined the other plants operating in the USSR. Over this period, the plant produced more than two million tonnes of pig iron for the country. While in 1935 we produced 247,700 tonnes, by 1939 the figure increased to 468,000 tonnes, which means an 88% growth in absolute terms. Our cogeneration plant generated of power for third parties in 1935, while in 1939 we have produced 4.5 times more – 80,000 kW. Our district and Voronezh Region have a pretty solid source of power supply. The average wage of workers has grown by 31% over five years whilst labour productivity has improved accordingly.

The plant’s performance in 1934–1939, according to Order No. 394 dated 5 November 1939.

The plant produced more than 2 million tonnes of pig iron in five years, with 247,700 tonnes in 1935 and 468,000 tonnes in 1939, an 88% growth in output. In 1935, the cogeneration plant generated 18,380 kW of electricity and 80,000 kW, or 4.5 times more, in 1939.

About 172 million rubles was invested in the construction project over five years, with around 14 million rubles spent on building various public amenities. The number of Stakhanovites was 30.3% of the headcount in 1935 which grew to 42.6% in 1939. The number of shock workers increased from 22.6% to 27.1% between 1935 and 1939. The average wage of workers grew by 31% over five years, whilst labour productivity improved accordingly. The plant outstripped its October target by 107.3%.

01 november
NLMZ as a pacesetter

78.8% of all personnel at the plant were Stakhanovites and shock workers by 1940. The number of improvement ideas grew from 52 in 1935 to 186 in 1940. Top performers actively supported the movement encouraging multitasking which became popular in 1940. When this movement emerged, 11 people at the plant began operating a few machines simultaneously and 52 workers began combining jobs.

In November 1940, the primary workschool was reorganised as a vocational school by order of the director.

As production output increased, the headcount and structure of plant personnel was ever changing. The number of workers went up although the proportion of engineering and white-collar personnel decreased:

1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939 1940
Workers 255 1,553 1,763 1,477 1,360 1,331 1,201
Engineers and technicians 25 167 183 174 175 169 159
Junior maintenance staff 12 99 257 275 278 262 253
White-collar employees 20 126 142 135 135 145 121
24 june
This is how the war began

NLMZ operated at its full capacity until late June 1941. Feedstocks ran out in August, coke and iron ore delivery from the Donbass stopped, with supply of raw materials from the Eastern regions fairly irregular. Nevertheless, everyone was willing to work twice as hard to support the war effort by improving pig iron production. Za Chugun newspaper issue dated 16 August 1941 reported the news that workers had been working double shifts since the first days of the war.

As soon as the great defence of the country began, hundreds of workers, engineers and white-collar employees at NLMZ submitted applications to the Party Committee, the Committee of the All-Union Leninist Young Communist League and the enlistment office, volunteering to join the army and be sent to the battlefield.

Order No. 444

On forming a militia at Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works

27 June 1941

To ensure safety and protection of the Socialist property of the Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works, I HEREBY ORDER that a militia be formed by enlisting plant workers, engineers and white-collar employees.

Militias are formed on a voluntary basis and operate outside of working hours.

All shop managers and heads of departments are instructed to assign all volunteers for militia service to the command of the militia detachment chief officer and to dismiss the volunteers promptly after hours for their militia duty.

I hereby appoint Comrade Bugakov Chief Officer of the Militia and order that the organisation be formed immediately and finish the assignment by 8:00 p.m. on 27 June 1941.

Progress in the task is to be reported directly to me.

Plant Director SERGEEV.

State Archive of Lipetsk Region, R-422, op. 1, d. 30, p. 186

In autumn 1941 the front line was moving closer to Lipetsk, and the situation became more complicated. A fighter unit was organised at the plant to prevent possible subversive actions. Fyodor Sergeev, Director of NLMZ, was appointed its Chief Officer, with Power Engineer Ivan Naumenko as his deputy. The men in the fighter unit patrolled the premises at night to prevent any sabotage by the enemy.

In October 1941, the government made the decision to evacuate the equipment of the blast furnace shop, cogeneration plant, water supply system, railway and machine shops of the plant to Chelyabinsk. On 28 October, Fyodor Sergeev, Director of NLMZ, issued Order No. 656 “On Evacuation of NLMZ” based on the decision of the government and a telegraph order from Ivan Tevosian, People’s Commissar of Ferrous Metallurgy.

It's hard to imagine what it took to dismantle in a few weeks what had been built over the years: two blast furnaces and the combined heat and power plant. Apart from the equipment, engineering drawings and technical documentation for all facilities and buildings had to be evacuated as well. 600 railway cars in 14 military trains arrived at Shagol station in Chelyabinsk Region in late December 1941. By that time, the German troops had already been defeated near Moscow.

As a Wehrmacht general wrote in his memoirs about the autumn-winter campaign near Moscow: “The fast-moving German divisions that were accustomed to Blitzkrieg operations had become clumsy and slow, almost as clumsy as the Napoleonic armies in 1812.” They were waiting for the frost to strike as their vehicles had been bogged down in impassable mud and slush on Russian roads. And the frost struck...

“The oil froze in the machines. Carbines, machine pistols and machine-guns packed up. Tank engines would not start.” Meanwhile, “The Russians proved themselves masters of rapidly improvised defence, especially in the wintery forests and swamps.”

In October 1941, the decision was made to evacuate the workers of the Studenovskoye deposit. They were delivered to the South Urals and employed at the Orsko-Khalilovsky Iron and Steel Works.
23 january
The second evacuation of NLMZ

On 23 January 1942, after the Nazi army had been defeated near Moscow and Soviet troops had taken the offensive, the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR decided to restore the Novolipetsk plant, by Resolution No. 78-310. The equipment was shipped back to Lipetsk and the installation began. In just three months the steelworkers, builders and residents of the city and nearby villages restored blast furnace No. 1 and the boiler and electrics of the cogeneration plant powered by the ‘Svobodny Sokol’ Lipetsk Iron Works required for furnace operation, in addition to the water supply, iron foundry, machine- and electrical shops.

On 23 January 1942, after the Nazi army had been defeated near Moscow and Soviet troops had taken the offensive, the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR decided to restore the Novolipetsk plant, by Resolution No. 78-310. The equipment was shipped back to Lipetsk and the installation began. In just three months the steelworkers, builders and residents of the city and nearby villages restored blast furnace No. 1 and the boiler and electrics of the cogeneration plant powered by the ‘Svobodny Sokol’ Lipetsk Iron Works required for furnace operation, in addition to the water supply, iron foundry, machine- and electrical shops.
When rebuilding the plant, everyone was trying to support the war effort as best they could. On 7 May 1942, Lipetskaya Kommuna newspaper wrote about an initiative of the NLMZ drama club which had put on a play, Patriots, and “decided to donate the 1,800 rubles collected at the performance to the fund for construction of the Lipetsk Bolshevik aircraft.”
By July 1942, NLMZ had been fully rebuilt and was ready for commissioning. While plant management was awaiting for the order to blow in blast furnace No. 1, the German army launched its attack on Stalingrad.
On 7–9 July total evacuation of all equipment, materials and the workforce was conducted for the second time. Overall, 553 railcars of equipment, 123 railcars of materials, 55 empty cars and 713 plant employees were evacuated. In January 1944, Novolipetsk cogeneration plant, now based in Chelyabinsk, generated its first power, and on 30 April blast furnace No. 1 produced its first pig iron. Following the evacuation to Chelyabinsk and mobilisation of plant workers, only 206 workers and 16 engineers remained at NLMZ, but it kept operating anyway. Using the remaining equipment, the personnel restored the foundry shop and machinery repair shop, launched the transport and electrical shops and the water supply system. There was a severe shortage of raw materials, fuel and power.

From the report of the NLMZ committee on fulfilment of defence orders for the army:
... After the dismantling and evacuation had been completed, the plant received defence orders. The plant laboratory launched production of a whole range of goods (incendiary briquettes, fuse paper and matches). For the record, their manufacturing was new in terms of proportioning (recipe). The laboratory employees were quite proactive in this respect.
The machine shop gained a lot of experience manufacturing mortar-gun bases. Trench stoves have been in production for a few months. These goods have been continuously produced though a number of workers involved in the manufacturing process had been mobilised or evacuated. They were replaced with untrained personnel, mostly women... They promptly learned how to produce these complex items and were able to take the place of the men who had gone to the battlefield and the qualified workers who had been evacuated.

In 1942 the Kumansky mine was built by miners of the Studenovskoye deposit in a bare and deserted field. They had to overcome incredible difficulties to dig the quarry and start producing refractory clay.
01 february
The plant restoration

In February 1943, NLMZ took the Pruzhanskaya machine and tractor station in Vodopyanovsky District under its patronage and provided them with a lot of support until the end of the war. Machine operators were supplied with coal and iron, qualified workers were sent to the station to help repair farming equipment, and tractor spare parts were manufactured.

Prior to the Battle of Kursk, NLMZ had provided the front with all things necessary. Military hardware repair facilities, ammunition depots and food storages were set up in a pine forest at the plant’s premises.

At the same time, NLMZ was instructed to master production of water gate valves and sirocco centrifugal fans. It was also essential to get the steelmaking process up and running. The iron foundry was shortly set up in the locomotive depot building, with an acid Bessemer converter launched.

As requested by the Voronezh Regional Committee of the Communist Party, the plant produced munitions and war supplies as well as goods for the home front: cases for F1 ‘limonka’ grenades, trench stoves, mortar-gun bases, anti-tank hedgehogs, brackets, horseshoes, shovels, axes, crowbars, clamps and so on. In addition, products for the agricultural sector were manufactured, including horse engines for threshing machines, spare parts for farming equipment, etc.

NLMZ employees initiated relief measures for the populations of the regions freed from German occupation. In their free time, they manufactured and shipped five railcars full of window and door frames, 300 iron stoves and kitchen stoves as well as about 1,000 crowbars and iron shovels to the liberated areas.

"Lipetskaya Kommuna" newspaper reported: “In early October, young boiler makers of the machine shop at Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works built the first front-line youth crew. There are five people in the crew, including two students of Workschool No. 3. The crew’s performance over the first ten days of work is estimated as 115% of the target. Burdin, a student at Workschool No. 3, met his personal target showing 230% performance.”

During the Great Patriotic War, workers, engineers and white-collar employees of NLMZ donated 225,000 rubles of their personal savings in order to obtain a tank column. The State Defence Committee sent two letters of appreciation to the plant’s personnel in recognition of their patriotic actions.

The employees supervised Hospital No. 1282 for four years, providing ongoing care for wounded soldiers and officers. The workers supplied the hospital with all kinds of furniture. The Komsomol organisation took charge of cultural activities. Young men and women spent their free time after hard work talking to the wounded, reading newspapers to them and organising amateur concerts. 110 women took turns staying at the hospital.
18 march
Refocusing production

In 1944 the machine pool of the plant significantly increased, as did the pig iron casting capacity. The target that year was topped by 15% and the technical infrastructure was substantially improved. The number of workers grew, exceeding 1,000 people.

The plant’s workers, engineers and technicians, inspired by the Red Army’s victories in 1944, made a commitment to produce 300 tonnes of cast iron and 200 tonnes of plumbing rebar above the annual target, as well as to ensure 1,400,000 rubles in savings in excess of the plan. They made good on their promise. The 1944 production target was outstripped by 12%.

On 12 April 1944, Lipetskaya Kommuna newspaper reported: “The admirable movement of “three hundreders” (employees who fulfil triple their quota) is on the upswing. Comrade Makarkin, a turner, is one of the pioneers of this initiative. He regularly fulfils three times his quota. A team of boiler makers under Kolesnikov’s guidance took the lead in April. All members of this team turn out triple the regular quotas.”

According to the 1944 production target, the plant was expected to produce 2,500 tonnes of plumbing rebar, 600 sirocco fans, 113 horse drives for threshing machines and hundreds of spare parts for tractors and other farming equipment – products in the total amount of 8,187,000 rubles.

Yet, the 1945 production plan set already a more demanding target – to produce output worth 10.5 million rubles for the national economy.

From Kommuna newspaper (18 March 1944):

A telegram from the workers, engineers and white-collar employees of NLMZ to Supreme Commander-in-Chief Joseph Stalin regarding fund-raising to sponsor a tank column

MOSCOW, the Kremlin

18 March 1944

The workers, engineers and white-collar employees of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works, inspired by the valiant Red Army’s milestone victories, donated 225,000 rubles of their personal savings to build a tank column. The fundraising continues.


09 may
In anticipation of victory

Victory in the ‘Great Patriotic War’ caused an unheard-of uplift in workers’ enthusiasm and labour morale. Even the iron foundry shop, which had been lagging behind, topped its half-year target. The plant ranked first among the city’s companies in terms of performance. It was awarded the Transferable Red Banner of the City Committee of the AUCP(b) and the Municipal Executive Committee.

By autumn 1945, construction of the steel structures shop was completed. Steel production was set up and an electric arc furnace was installed. The number of workers and engineers grew to 1,900 people.

The preparatory work started for reconstruction of the blast furnaces and the cogeneration plant. However, Voronezh TPP was unable to fully supply the plant’s power demand due to energy consumption restrictions, so the reconstruction issue remained up in the air. Besides, the equipment of the plant’s cogeneration plant was fully operational at Chelyabinsk Metallurgical Plant, and shipping it back was out of the question. Taking into account the plant’s power shortage, the People’s Commissariat of Ferrous Metallurgy decided to provide NLMZ with a turbine generator and three boilers for its cogeneration plant.

In March 1946, the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union approved a plan for revival and development of the country’s national economy. Around 6,000 large industrial facilities were to be reconstructed and commissioned as part of the fourth five-year plan.

The Novolipetsk plant was also being reborn. All city residents capable of working voluntarily participated in the reconstruction of the plant on weekends. Construction workers worked around the clock.

About 2,000 of Lipetsk citizens went to war. More than 620 of them were killed in battle defending their homeland; more than 300 were missing in action. Construction of a crushing and beneficiation plant at the Studenovskoye deposit began in 1945.

Pavel Sergeev, 1946–1962

(18 October 1911 – 7 November 1988)

Pavel Sergeev was born in Yenakiyevo, Donetsk Region, to the family of a white-collar employee.

He began his career as an apprentice mechanic at the machine shop of Yenakiyeve Iron and Steel Works.

He graduated fr om the Dnepropetrovsk Metallurgical Institute in 1932 as a blast furnace engineer and was sent to the Dzerzhinsk Metallurgical Plant in Dneprodzerzhinsk wh ere he worked until 1941 as a research engineer, foreman, shift supervisor, blast furnace unit manager, deputy blast furnace shop manager and acting blast furnace shop manager.

Sergeev was a veteran of the Second World War. He fought on the Leningrad Front, the Volkhov Front and the 3rd Belorussian Front as a platoon officer and division officer. In 1945 he returned to the steelmaking plant in Dneprodzerzhinsk to take the position of deputy director.

Sergeev was appointed Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1946.

The plant’s cogeneration plant as well as blast furnaces No. 1 and 2 were reconstructed and launched under his supervision. He also oversaw construction and commissioning of blast furnace No. 3, flat rolling shops (FRS) No. 1 and 2, electric arc furnace (EAF) and sections shops.

In 1962 he was relieved of his post for health reasons.

01 march
Restoration of NLMZ

Pavel Sergeev became Head of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1946. Reconstruction of the plant destroyed during the war began under his leadership. In March 1946, the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union approved a plan for revival and development of the country’s national economy. About 6,000 large industrial facilities were to be reconstructed and commissioned as part of the fourth five-year plan, including Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. According to the plan, a 1,000 cbm blast furnace was to be rebuilt within five years.

NLMZ was being reborn. All city residents who were capable of working voluntarily participated in the reconstruction of the plant on weekends. Construction workers worked around the clock.

Pavel Sergeev became Head of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1946. Reconstruction of the plant destroyed during the war began under his leadership. In March 1946, the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union approved a plan for revival and development of the country’s national economy. About 6,000 large industrial facilities were to be reconstructed and commissioned as part of the fourth five-year plan, including Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. According to the plan, a 1,000 cbm blast furnace was to be rebuilt within five years.

NLMZ was being reborn. All city residents who were capable of working voluntarily participated in the reconstruction of the plant on weekends. Construction workers worked around the clock.
01 september
Expanding the range of products

Figure 3. BF-1 reconstruction.

The 1947 gross production target for the entire plant was exceeded by 12%.

Performance according to the plan demonstrated in key products was as follows: cast iron – 126.0%, cast steel – 117.5%, plumbing rebar – 192.5%, cast steel valves – 58.8%, forged valves – 61.4%, sirocco fans – 103.3%, farming machinery spares – 111.6%, consumer goods – 105.6%. Gross production increased by 21.2% compared with 1946.

Annual labour productivity reached 112.8% of the target and 129.5% compared to 1946. The cost of comparable products shrank by 4.2% against 1946, with 10.0% set as the target reduction. The plant showed total losses of 4,613,000 rubles in the balance of its core operations versus 2,960,000 rubles of projected losses. Investment utilisation was 30%, with 67.2% of target fulfilment through the plant’s own resources.

In 1947 the plant expanded the range of goods as it started production of the following new items:

  • Cast steel valve for steam pipes 100 mm in diameter
  • Forged steel valves (13, 19, 25, 32 mm)
  • TSARI high-pressure valves No. 6 and 8
  • Heat resistant fire grate bars for sinter belts

Construction of the crushing and beneficiation plant at the Studenovskoye deposit was completed on 1 September 1947. Vladimir Sidorov was the first to become head of the plant.

01 january
Outstanding performance

The 1948 gross production target was outstripped by 34.6%. The performance demonstrated vs. planning in the core products was as follows:

  • Cast iron – 120.5%
  • Cast steel – 141.3%
  • Plumbing rebar – 159.9%
  • Cast steel valves – 124.0%
  • Forged valves – 121.1%
  • Fans – 115.6%

The plant beat its cost reduction target in the reporting year. Costs were to be reduced by 11.0% whilst in fact they dropped by 26.9%. The plant’s working capital went up by 1,401,000 rubles in 1948.

NLMZ managed to increase labour productivity by 38.5% in 1948.

In 1948 the plant produced a recovery unit for recycling spent oil. It was a complex system of pumps, electric preheating furnaces, pipe coils and other mechanisms. Testing proved that the machine was compliant with all technical requirements, with design capacity of 18–20 litres per hour. During testing and further operation, engineer Dankevich redesigned the preheating furnace. Following this modification, the recovery system’s processing capacity reached 24–30 litres per hour.

In summer 1948, NLMZ opened a health and recreation centre for its top performers, with a daily capacity of 50 people. The plant’s top Stakhanovites were the first to have a vacation at the centre.

28 april
Restoration of the cogeneration plant

On 28 April 1949, the first stage of the rebuilt cogeneration plant was put in operation, namely one 25,000 kW turbine generator and two steam boilers with a capacity of 90–110 tonnes per hour. Aside fr om power generation, the cogeneration plant supplied heat to the Lipetsk Tractor Plant.

Innovators working at NLMZ repeatedly participated in contests wh ere the best improvement ideas were reviewed. Due to their efforts, twenty ideas of those implemented in 1949 saved outgoings of 247,000 rubles, or 57% of the annual target.

There was a shortage of professional, well-trained talent again, just like before the war. A lot of Lipetsk steelworkers did not return from the battlefield. Many also stayed behind in the Urals for work. The issue of manpower was addressed by a shock work Stakhanovite approach, training young talent and employing women.

22 december
Rebuilding blast furnace No. 1

In 1950 the Central Committee of the Communist Party and the government proposed the following goal: “The iron and steel industry must reach its pre-war level as soon as possible and outstrip it by 35% on average.” The new battle for steel began. On 22 December 1950, the first 1,000 cbm blast furnace was put in operation.
Ivan Kupriyanov took part in the launch of the first post-war furnace, the gas watchman who went on to become chief gas watchman of blast furnace shop No. 1.

Afterwards, due to his professional expertise, he was invited to work at the construction of blast furnace No. 6, and participated in its installation, implementation and commissioning. He was awarded the Hero of Socialist Labour title in 1971.

27 october
Rebuilding blast furnace No. 2

In 1951 the workers of the blast furnace shop entered a socialist competition for reaching projected production capacity ahead of schedule. Six months later, the second 1,000 cbm blast furnace produced its first pig iron. The Technical Training Department headed by I. Ivanisov trained blast furnace keepers, gas watchmen and track-scale operators to service BF-2.

By the end of the year two blast furnaces produced 780–800 tonnes of pig iron daily, nearing their design capacity.

The plant’s workers were honoured with government awards for their achievement in restoration of NLMZ. Seven steelworkers earned the highest distinction – the Order of Lenin. Among them were S. Krushinsky and N. Sochnev, blast furnace shop foremen. Sochnev was the first in Lipetsk Region to be awarded the Hero of Socialist Labour title later in 1958.

Sochnev, Krushinsky and Ivanisov participated in the commissioning of the first blast furnace and production of the first pig iron at NLMZ in 1934.

The personnel of the Studenovskoye Mining Administration decided to raise flux production to 1,200,000 tonnes in 1952.

21 september
Stakhanovite steelmaking

In 1952 the Council of Ministers of the USSR decided to construct manufacturing shops at NLMZ.

The socialist competition became more intense at the plant after the war.

The employees worked hard to stay ahead of schedule fulfilling their production programme and improve their performance in terms of quality. The first half-year target was outstripped by 32%. Hundreds of tonnes of high grade pig iron were produced above target. The effective volume utilisation factor for one of the blast furnaces was brought up to 1.07 versus the projected 1.12 . Fast metal working techniques were widely implemented at the machine shop.

The performance of the labour productivity plan was exceeded by 8.1% in 11 months thanks to functional improvements in mechanisms and machines, mechanisation of labour-intensive processes, better work organisation and production management.

From Kommuna newspaper (21 September 1952): “The drive for transition to team Stakhanovite effort has been particularly intense. The other day, the title of the Stakhanovite facility was awarded to another three shops: the cogeneration plant, the construction and repair shop, and the control and instrumentation shop. Thus, 10 out of 18 shops at the plant are now titled Stakhanovite teamwork shops.

The gross production target was fulfilled on 8 December, when the pig iron production plan hit on 6 December.

Fulfillment of increased socialist commitments by the plant (1952)

Produce above the target Produced 17,000 t of pig iron 37,517 t of pig iron
Save coke Saved in 11 months 30,000 t 48,829 t
Save electricity Saved 1,800,000 kWh 3,294,300 kWh

The plant was on the upswing. The settlement for workers on the left bank of the Voronezh River was growing as well. The plant’s impact on the life and social development of the small company town became all the more significant. Nine high-rise apartment buildings, a hostel and three comprehensive secondary education schools were commissioned by the end of 1952.

01 february
Transition to the integrated plant

Lipetskstroy completed the reconstruction of the Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1953.

In February 1953, the Ministry of Ferrous Metallurgy decided to set up an electrical steel production facility at NLMZ. A large electric arc furnace (EAF) shop, cold-rolling and hot-rolling steel shops (afterwards named flat rolling shops No. 1 and 2) and several coke batteries were planned to be built for this purpose. It was also necessary to boost the capacity of the plant’s cogeneration plant. The plant was gradually evolving into an integrated iron and steel works.

The bulk of the pig iron produced was to be rolled into a wide range of steel plates. In addition, the plan involved construction of a sinter plant, new warehouse facilities, a dam and a bridge over the Voronezh River, as well as residential housing and public amenities.

Rollers were trained from scratch. A promotion and recruitment campaign was launched for the young people of the city and region. Discharged war veterans arrived to the plant in groups: leaving military service, army men from Lipetsk invited friends to come to their hometown to work at the new construction site.

Special evening classes were organised for construction workers willing to learn a new profession, such as furnace helper, mill roller and mill control panel operator. After an apprenticeship at allied plants across the country, these trainees made highly-qualified and competent steelworkers.

28 october
1954

In 1954 NLMZ showed good performance in particular production areas: the gross output target was outstripped by 6.1% while the marketable products plan was exceeded by 5.7%.

In 1954 NLMZ showed good performance in particular production areas: the gross output target was outstripped by 6.1% while the marketable products plan was exceeded by 5.7%.
17 july
Launch of rolled steel production in Lipetsk

The first steel strip was produced at flat rolling shop No. 1 on 17 July 1957 using a type-1200 mill that was put into operation. NLMZ previously had no shops to manufacture rolled steel products.

The shop began operation using slabs delivered from Nizhny Tagil, but supply was extremely irregular. This led to a breakthrough in plant production. The mill would feature furnace coilers and was designed to produce grain-oriented steel in coils for subsequent conversion.

At the time, NLMZ used soaking pits to heat the ingots brought from Magnitogorsk and Zaporozhye for two weeks. Afterwards, the ingots were rolled on the type-1200 mill according to the original technology: they were rolled into slabs on the universal mill stand, transported to the slab warehouse, passed through the continuous reheating furnace, and then rolled on the universal finishing stand and coiled by the end coiler.

Following the EAF shop’s launch in 1959, the type-1200 mill became the first hot mill in the world to produce semi-finished products for cold-rolled GO steel from precast slabs.

28 march
Large-scale production upgrade

On 28 March 1958, the Council of Ministers of the USSR issued a resolution aimed at increasing the design capacity of the Novolipetsk plant. In June, the government approved a production expansion project developed by the Leningrad State Institute for Designing Iron and Steel Plants (Lengipromez).

On 31 December 1958, the first stage of the EAF shop was commissioned.

The equipment was upgraded at the hot-rolled flats shop (flat rolling shop No. 1). A universal mill was installed, its finishing stand replacing a whole batch of stands at thin-plate mills. This was the first such mill in the country and the fourteenth in the world. Also, a new accessory drive for the discharge carriage of the slitting unit was manufactured. Following these modifications, the design capacity of the shop was exceeded.

The blast furnaces were upgraded between 1953 and 1958. They were now equipped for operation under higher pressure of up to 0.6–0.8 atm at the furnace throat. Blast temperature was raised to 858 degrees, and blast output grew to 2,200–2,300 cubic metres per minute. An ore gantry was also put in operation and ore reclaiming improved. Blast furnaces began operating more smoothly, pig iron smelting became faster and coke consumption shrank.

01 july
The world’s first continuous casting

100% casting began at NLMZ in July 1959. Continuous casting has a number of advantages over the conventional method of casting in molds. Benefits are enormous and it was Lipetsk steelworkers that were the first in the world to adopt this technology.
Using continuous casting machines for slab production allows for a 75–80% of saving of power compared to casting in molds, with subsequent reduction at slabbing mills. Yield in this case reaches 93–95% versus 60–70%. The area of the steel foundry can be reduced almost by half, pig molds and equipment for their maintenance become redundant, slabbing mills are no longer needed and the quality of cast billets improves substantially.

In October 1959, the by-product coke shop was converted into a coke plant. All operations handling materials at the coke plant were now mechanised. Ramp operators, the heaviest and most hazardous occupation, became obsolete. Operations such as lifting coke oven hatch doors and opening the slide gates of the coal storage bunker were mechanised. Pneumatic tipping gear for coal and coal charge was installed, coke sampling was automated, and a number of other operations became power-operated. All areas where dust release or gas emission could occur were sealed.

On 31 December 1959 at 8:30 a.m., NLMZ received the first train of iron ore produced by miners at the Lebedinsky Mine on the Kursk Magnetic Anomaly. The steelworkers who held a meeting for this occasion greeted the train with a storm of applause. The Novolipetsk employees were congratulated on the arrival of the first iron ore from Belgorod Region by Lebedinsky Mine Manager Kushnarenko, excavator operator Pavlov, and Chief Engineer of KMAruda Shifrin who made assurances that the miners would produce and ship 200,000–250,000 tonnes of ore to Lipetsk in 1960.

01 june
Launch of grain-oriented steel production

The cold-rolling shop (FRS-2) was put in operation on 1 June 1960. Its launch completed the construction of the electrical steel shops and made it the USSR’s first facility for production of grain oriented electrical steel based on NLMZ’s unique proprietary technology.

The cold-rolling shop occupied 12 hectares, comparable with the area of the Moscow-based Luzhniki main sports arena. It was equipped with high-capacity machines for pickling, heat treatment, cold rolling and trimming of steel sheets.

Construction was completed in the record time of 18 months while construction of rolling shops would normally take 23 months according to existing standards. The cost of construction and installation for the facility overall was 7.3 million rubles less than the estimate.

While adopting the grain oriented steel production technology, extensive research was conducted to improve the hot-rolling and cold-rolling technologies and develop decarburisation and recrystallisation annealing as well as high-temperature annealing.

This research identified the optimal parameters of steel structure, substructure and texture which control secondary recrystallisation during high-temperature annealing.

Thanks to this technology, the plant was able to significantly reduce GO steel production costs and increase output. There was a major breakthrough in the power industry when high grade home-produced electrical steel began to be used in manufacturing of high-power transformers.

The electrical engineering industry became less dependent on imported goods and the relevant restrictions in transformer production.

The construction of blast furnace No. 3 started in October 1960.

December 1960. The integrated project specification for construction of Stoilensky Mine, with an annual output potential of 4 million tonnes of iron ore, was approved by the Resolution of the Belgorod Economic Council.

NLMZ’s 1960 annual report said:

“The capacity of the first stage has been specified: 40,000 tonnes of grain-oriented and 50,000 tonnes of cold-rolled carbon steel per year. The equipment for the first stage includes: one pickling line, a five-stand type-1200 mill, a reversing mill type-1200, a slitting unit, a cut-to-length machine, 18 heat-treatment furnaces for black and bright annealing, two washing and cleaning units for grain-oriented steel plates...”

New rotary boring drills (RBD-2) with a drilling rate of 70–80 metres per shift were supplied to the Studenovskoye Mining Administration from 1960, providing four times the speed of old cable drilling tools.


01 january
Development of Stoilensky mine

On 1 January 1961, the Board of Directors of Stoilensky mine, under construction at the time and temporarily part of Kombinat KMAruda, was established. Vladimir Khersonsky was the first to be appointed as Director.

On 1 June 1961, the first assembled mining excavator was delivered to Stoilensky to start overburden removal and break ground.

In July 1961, construction of an under-drainage system was initiated to drain overburden rock and iron ore at Stoilensky. Two drain wells were to be built on opposite sides of the forthcoming mine, with dozens of boreholes and mine openings to ensure water drawdown.

In autumn 1961, the Executive Committee of the Regional Soviet of Workers’ Deputies allowed NLMZ to recruit workers for construction of blast furnace No. 3.

Vladimir Vinichenko

He was Director of NLMZ in 1962–1967.

Vladimir Vinichenko was born in Khartsyzsk, Donetsk Region, to a family of a white-collar employee. He graduated from Kamensky Metallurgical Institute.

In 1931–1956, Vinichenko worked at Kuznetsk Metallurgical Plant as shift supervisor, assistant blast furnace shop manager, head of the Fuel and Raw Materials Department and Deputy Director for Commerce.

In 1956, he became Director of the ’Svobodny Sokol‘ Lipetsk Iron Works. Starting from 1962, Vladimir Vinichenko took over as Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. The first basic oxygen furnace shop, blast furnace No. 4, the country’s biggest sinter plant, nitrogen and fertiliser production facilities, a blast furnace slag processing shop, a refractory shop and other facilities were built under his leadership.

He greatly contributed to adoption of unique steel production technology in heavy-duty converters with continuous casting by special machines, as well as to the development and improvement of blast furnace production technologies.

Vinichenko was awarded the Order of Lenin (1966), three Orders of the Red Banner of Labour (1951, 1952 and 1958), two Orders of the Badge of Honour (1943 and 1945) and the Honorary Steelworker title (1960). He was elected a delegate to the 23rd Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1966), a deputy of the Lipetsk Municipal Executive Committee and the Regional Soviet.

In 1967, he was transferred to Tula and was appointed Director of the Kosaya Gora Iron Works (KGIW).

08 february
Launch of blast furnace No. 3

On 8 February 1962, blast furnace No. 3, with the volume of 2,000 cubic metres and capacity of 1.5 million tonnes per year, produced its first pig iron. Among the young builders and mechanical engineers who participated in the construction were representatives from the Urals and Siberia, Ukraine and the Far East, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan, Moscow, Leningrad and other cities – overall, from 211 enterprises of the USSR, which supplied complex equipment.

01 march
Development of power transmission lines

In the 1960s, the power industry of the USSR displayed rapid growth in the construction of power grids. The overall length of overhead power transmission lines (OPTL) with a voltage of 220 kV and higher built by the Ministry of Energy and Electrification of the USSR totalled 78,200 km.

In March 1964, the Kuybyshev – Moscow transmission line at NLMZ was switched over to the high voltage of 500 kV. This work completed, the 500 kV backbone power grid of the Unified Energy System of the European part of the USSR was in place.

The first stage of the two sinter strand sinter plant was commissioned at NLMZ in 1964.

In July 1964, 1 million cubic metres of spoil from Stoilensky mine was disposed of at dumps.

01 october
New generator at NLMZ’s cogeneration plant

To improve the capital overburden removal operations and speed up the construction of a high grade ore mine, three new modes of transportation were introduced for overburden shipping: hybrid, conveyor and hydraulic earth-moving. The cost of overburden removal operations in the mine shrank by over 100,000 rubles a year.

In October 1965, Stoilensky split from Kombinat KMAruda and became independent within the Tsentroruda Trust of the Council of National Economy of the Central Black Earth economic area.

The new stage of the plant’s development started in 1965. A new electrolysis unit was built at the cold-rolling shop, a new high-capacity generator was launched at the cogeneration plant, regular production of mineral fertilisers began at the nitrogen and fertiliser facilities, while the construction of the second continuous furnace at FRS-1, as well as a number of other facilities, was almost complete.

01 june
The first slab

Construction of the country’s largest hot-rolling carbon steel shop (later on, flat rolling shop No. 3) began in 1966. Its main aisle spanned over a kilometre, and a wide-strip type -2000 mill ran along its overall length. The construction of FRS-3 was proclaimed an All-Union shock work construction project of the Komsomol.

1 June 1966. The mine celebrated its fifth anniversary. More than 33 million cubic metres of overburden rock had been dumped over the years.

On 18 March 1966, basic oxygen furnace shop No. 1 (BOF-1) was put in operation. By the morning of March 19, the first slab was produced. The following words were immediately written on it in chalk: “Hurrah! Long live the working class!” The following day, the slab produced was used to cast a bas-relief featuring the words: “A gift for the 23rd Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. First converter steel produced at NLMZ. March 1966”. The shop reached its design capacity in 14 months, which was 16 months prior to the target date.

BOF-1 was the first in the world to combine heavy-duty converters and high-performance vertical continuous slab casters in a single technological cycle. During implementation of this technology, the basic principles of logistics were developed for combination of high-performance basic oxygen furnaces, metal purification units and continuous casting machines. The subsequent scope of work for reconstruction of the shop’s equipment made it possible to improve the operational level of the continuous slab casters and provide a substantial increase in the capacity of the BOF production .

NLMZ’s new steelmaking method gave birth to the currently widespread technology of ’continuous-continuous casting‘, which means continuous casting of ingots fr om a series of replaceable steel teeming ladles.

This method delivered a reduction in metal loss, improved chemical homogeneity, surface finish and internal structure of cast metal, and later on fundamentally changed the downstream workflow, eliminating slabbing mills and enabling hot charging of ingots and ’direct‘ rolling of billets, significantly simplifying the procedure of billet preparation for steelmaking.

The plant improved key steelmaking production parameters for a wide range of high grade steel (including low carbon steel for automotive sheets and low alloy tube steel), as well as a melted steel protection system against secondary oxidation, mold oscillators for the continuous slab caster and the secondary slab cooling system. Stopper-free steel teeming from ladles was adopted and implemented as well.

On 6 July 1966, the State Commission authorised the first stage of the BOF shop for operation. Many builders were decorated with the highest award, the Order of Lenin, including Lipetskstroy Trust Manager Sergei Shuminsky and Chief Engineer Vladimir Khoroshavin. New residential neighbourhoods in Lipetsk were named after them.

On 1 June 1966, Stoilensky celebrated its fifth anniversary. More than 33 million cubic metres of overburden rock had been dumped over this time.

Anatoly Likhoradov

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1967–1970

Anatoly Likhoradov was born in Dnepropetrovsk. He began his career in 1942 as a mechanic at Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works.

He graduated from the Dnepropetrovsk Metallurgical Institute in 1948 and was sent to the local DMZ Petrovsky steelmaking plant wh ere he worked as assistant foreman, foreman, shift manager and chief foreman at the long steel shop.

In 1956–1963, he worked at Kryvorozhstal plant as Long Steel Shop Manager, Blooming Shop Manager, Chief Process Engineer and Deputy Chief Production Engineer.

Likhoradov was Director of DMZ Petrovsky steelmaking plant between 1963 and 1967.

In 1967 he was transferred to Lipetsk and appointed Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. Under his leadership, the plant built and commissioned flat rolling shop No. 3, rolling equipment repair shop No. 1, coke battery No. 5, the Sukhoborye Recreation Centre and a sports arena with a swimming pool. He also adopted steelmaking in heavy-duty converters with subsequent continuous casting into a wide mix of slabs by special machines.

In 1970 Anatoly Likhoradov was appointed Deputy Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR. In 1978 he became Head of the Ferrous and Non-Ferrous Metallurgy Unit at the Administrative Department of the Council of Ministers.

Since 1991 he has served as Deputy Head of the International Liaison Department at Stinol Foreign Trade, an NLMK- owned company.

11 march
Launch of blast furnace No. 4

On 11 March 1967, 2,000 cbm blast furnace No. 4 produced its first pig iron.

In June and July 1976, the world’s first trial steelmaking procedures using fuel-enriched blasting, with up to 40% oxygen content were conducted in BF-4. The adoption of this technology for the plant’s furnaces allowed for an increase in pig iron output from 6 million to 6.5 million tonnes in 1977 and 1978.

Production accounting at the blast furnace shop, shipping and sale records, scrap intake records broken down by supplier and the analysis of sold product accounts were all mechanised using a machine tabulation station, which was later reorganised into the Data Processing Centre and then the CAM system.

On 1 July 1969, flat rolling shop No. 3 was commissioned, with a type-2000 mill designed to produce 5.8 million tonnes per year. The mill was put in commercial operation in April 1970.

The type-2000 mill is one of the largest facilities in the industry. The total weight of its equipment is more than 37,000 tonnes. The area occupied by the unit itself is more than 120,000 square metres, with a 1.2 kilometre-long hot-rolling production line. The overall generating capacity of electric motors powering the mill equipment exceeds 170,000 kW. The mill is equipped with state-of-the-art automated production control systems.

The mill was designed with the application of the world’s cutting-edge technology of continuous rolling fr om continuously cast slabs and coiling hot-rolled strips, from the thinnest (1.2 mm) to thick (16 mm) ones, up to 1,850 mm in width, at a high speed and relatively low temperature.

Special long steel production processes for the shipbuilding and oil processing industries were developed and implemented, and the technology of steel strip rolling from special grades of construction steel was adopted.

The new design of the mill equipment enabled roll pressure and rolling speed rates which had not been possible before, as well as a substantial increase in the weight of rolled slabs.

The design output capacity of the mill was 5.78 million tonnes per year, unprecedented in global practice.

On 1 March 1969, the crushing and screening plant produced 3.8 million tonnes of high grade ore in one year, fully in line with its production load.

The first train of iron ore from Stoilensky mine was shipped to Novotulsky Metallurgical Plant on 2 April 1969.

Serafim Kolpakov

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1970–1978

Serafim Kolpakov was born in Lipetsk.

He graduated from the Lipetsk Ore Mining and Smelting College in 1951 and was sent to Ashinsky Metallurgical Plant wh ere he worked as a crew leader, production foreman and deputy head of the foundry shop.

Between 1957 and 1963, Kolpakov worked at Lipetsk Tractor Plant as a crew leader in the steel foundry shop, foreman, acting section manager and senior foreman of the iron foundry shop.

In 1963 he graduated from the Moscow Institute of Steel and Alloys, having completed his education, he changed his job and began working at Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works at BOF-1. He worked as a foreman, shift manager and deputy shop manager.

Kolpakov was appointed head of BOF-1 in 1967 and director of the plant in 1970. He was directly involved in the development and adoption of new technology of steelmaking through heavy-duty converters with subsequent continuous casting by special machines as well as in development and implementation of an integrated environmental protection control system at the plant.

Facilities built and commissioned under his leadership include blast furnace No. 2 which is still in operation, blast furnace No. 5, the steelmaking slag processing shop, the waste water treatment shop, steelmaking equipment repair shop No. 2, Zvezdny Sports Arena, Prometheus summer camp.

Serafim Kolpakov was appointed Deputy Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR in 1978 and became Minister in 1985. In 1989 he was appointed Minister of Metallurgy of the USSR. He retired in 1990 with an individual pension in recognition of his service to the nation.

In 1991, he became Vice President of the Union of Associations and Joint Stock Companies in the Area of Non-Conventional Materials.

Kolpakov was elected President of the International Union of Metalworkers in 1992.

During the 11th Congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (employers) in November 2000, he was elected to the Board of the RSPP.

In October 2001, Kolpakov was elected to the Management Committee of the Non-profit Partnership ‘Consortium Russian Steel’ founded after the agreement between NLMK and NTMK was signed.

Serafim Kolpakov was buried at Troyekurovskoye Cemetery.


05 november
Two million tonnes of high grade ore

March 1968. The supply of KU-800 N 1 equipment and units started. No unique mechanisms of this kind had been used in the country before.

On 5 November 1968, at 3:30 p.m., the first large-scale blast at Stoilensky mine was fired.

On 31 December 1968, the State Commission signed an acceptance act for commissioning of the first-stage facilities of the Stoilensky Mining Administration, with an annual design capacity of 2 million tonnes of high grade ore.

On 28 November 1968, the last steam locomotive was decommissioned at NLMZ. The plant was the first in the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic to move on to diesel locomotive engines. On December 3, rollers of FRS-2 shipped the one millionth tonne of steel to the Electrosila plant in Leningrad.

01 march
First computers and production practices

On 1 March 1969, the crushing and screening plant (CSP) took an industrial load of 3.8 million tonnes of high grade ore per year.

On 2 April 1969, the first train of iron ore from Stoilensky was shipped to Novotulsky Metallurgical Plant.

During 1968 and the first six months of 1969, computer technology was implemented at NLMZ. An automated control system for basic oxygen furnace production based on the Zuse 25/32 computer was developed and installed at the plant, and the first stage automated production control system was implemented using a Minsk-22 computer at FRS-2.

On 1 March 1969, the crushing and screening plant (CSP) took an industrial load of 3.8 million tonnes of high grade ore per year.
On 2 April 1969, the first train of iron ore fr om Stoilensky was shipped to Novotulsky Metallurgical Plant.
During 1968 and the first six months of 1969, computer technology was implemented at NLMZ. An automated control system for basic oxygen furnace production based on the Zuse 25/32 computer was developed and installed at the plant, and the first stage automated production control system was implemented using a Minsk-22 computer at FRS-2. Production accounting at the blast furnace shop, shipping and sale records, scrap intake records broken down by supplier and the analysis of sold product accounts were all mechanised using a machine tabulation station, which was later reorganised into the Data Processing Centre and then the CAM system.

On 1 July 1969, flat rolling shop No. 3 was commissioned, with a type-2000 mill designed to produce 5.8 million tonnes per year. The mill was put in commercial operation in April 1970.

The type-2000 mill is one of the largest facilities in the industry. The total weight of its equipment is more than 37,000 tonnes. The area occupied by the unit itself is more than 120,000 square metres, with a 1.2 kilometre-long hot-rolling production line. The overall generating capacity of electric motors powering the mill equipment exceeds 170,000 kW. The mill is equipped with state-of-the-art automated production control systems.
The mill was designed with the application of the world’s cutting-edge technology of continuous rolling from continuously cast slabs and coiling hot-rolled strips, from the thinnest (1.2 mm) to thick (16 mm) ones, up to 1,850 mm in width, at a high speed and relatively low temperature.
Special long steel production processes for the shipbuilding and oil processing industries were developed and implemented, and the technology of steel strip rolling from special grades of construction steel was adopted.
The new design of the mill equipment enabled roll pressure and rolling speed rates which had not been possible before, as well as a substantial increase in the weight of rolled slabs.
The design output capacity of the mill was 5.78 million tonnes per year, unprecedented in global practice.
On 1 March 1969, the crushing and screening plant produced 3.8 million tonnes of high grade ore in one year, fully in line with its production load.
The first train of iron ore from Stoilensky mine was shipped to Novotulsky Metallurgical Plant on 2 April 1969.




Serafim Kolpakov
Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1970–1978
Serafim Kolpakov was born in Lipetsk.

He graduated from the Lipetsk Ore Mining and Smelting College in 1951 and was sent to Ashinsky Metallurgical Plant wh ere he worked as a crew leader, production foreman and deputy head of the foundry shop.
Between 1957 and 1963, Kolpakov worked at Lipetsk Tractor Plant as a crew leader in the steel foundry shop, foreman, acting section manager and senior foreman of the iron foundry shop.
In 1963 he graduated from the Moscow Institute of Steel and Alloys, having completed his education, he changed his job and began working at Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works at BOF-1. He worked as a foreman, shift manager and deputy shop manager.
Kolpakov was appointed head of BOF-1 in 1967 and director of the plant in 1970. He was directly involved in the development and adoption of new technology of steelmaking through heavy-duty converters with subsequent continuous casting by special machines as well as in development and implementation of an integrated environmental protection control system at the plant.
Facilities built and commissioned under his leadership include blast furnace No. 2 which is still in operation, blast furnace No. 5, the steelmaking slag processing shop, the waste water treatment shop, steelmaking equipment repair shop No. 2, Zvezdny Sports Arena, Prometheus summer camp.
Serafim Kolpakov was appointed Deputy Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR in 1978 and became Minister in 1985. In 1989 he was appointed Minister of Metallurgy of the USSR. He retired in 1990 with an individual pension in recognition of his service to the nation.
In 1991, he became Vice President of the Union of Associations and Joint Stock Companies in the Area of Non-Conventional Materials.
Kolpakov was elected President of the International Union of Metalworkers in 1992.
During the 11th Congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (employers) in November 2000, he was elected to the Board of the RSPP.
In October 2001, Kolpakov was elected to the Management Committee of the Non-profit Partnership ‘Consortium Russian Steel’ founded after the agreement between NLMK and NTMK was signed.

Serafim Kolpakov was buried at Troyekurovskoye Cemetery.
08 april
Shock work awards

On 8 April 1970, Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works were awarded the Lenin Anniversary Letter of Commendation of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, the Council of Ministers and the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions.

The 1969–1970 Lenin Komsomol Prize was awarded in May 1970 to Alexander Teplenichev, a senior caster (crew leader) of BOF-1, for “excellent performance of the youth Komsomol teams, implementation of advanced production technologies, machines, mechanisms and best practices”.

In 1970 Starooskolsky Cement Plant began processing limestone from Stoilensky mine.

On 27 March 1970, Stoilensky miners had committed to produce 1 million tonnes of iron ore by the 100th anniversary of Vladimir Lenin’s birthday, and fulfilled their obligation 27 days ahead of schedule.

22 january
Altai-Koks project

The rapidly developing steelmaking plant needed its own fuel source. Previously, coke had been delivered from Ukraine. In the late 1960s, four coke batteries with 21.6 cbm furnaces were launched as well as a by-product recovery shop, a coal blending shop and a pitch coke production shop. Another four coke batteries with the first ever industrial coke quenchers were put in operation in the 1970s.

On 22 January 1971, NLMZ was awarded the Order of Lenin for “great achievements of the plant personnel in implementing new equipment, improving production technologies, growing output and enhancing technical and economic performance”.

A formal meeting on the upper governmental award was held in the aisle of the type-2000 mill. The efforts of top performers were recognised and highly appreciated. Speakers committed to produce 10,000 tonnes of pig iron above the target by the end of 1971. N. Bezryadin, Chief Mill Roller at the -type-2000 mill reported that his team had broken another record on January 31 when they had rolled 7,200 tonnes of steel. There had never been such a shift in production methods at similar mills worldwide to date.

The Altai-Koks construction project was approved on 9 April 1971 at the 24th Congress of the CPSU.

The coke plant was to become a giant system including the plant proper, a cogeneration plant, an external water supply, sewer and power facilities (construction site). It was necessary to renovate the rail access at Zarinskaya station and build a new railway station and a branch railway line to the industrial site.

On 13 March 1971, the two millionth tonne of iron ore was produced at Stoilensky.

In August 1971, two heavy-duty coating machines for transformer belt electrical insulation were commissioned at the cold-rolling shop. They were the final stage of the transformer belt production line.

14 april
Stoilensky project

On 14 April 1972, the Central Committee of the CPSU and the Council of Ministers issued a resolution on the start of Stoilensky project development.

Construction of Altai-Koks began in 1972. Tractors with portable cabins for builders arrived at the construction site of the forthcoming plant. Vasily Bazhura, who had previously been Head of Construction Department No. 18 of Biysk Trust No. 122, was in charge of the construction project. And so the countdown started for the construction of the coke plant, without high-flown speeches or large crowds – it was the first bucket of ground or one thousandth cubic metre that actually mattered...

The third sinter strand was launched at the sinter plant of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1972.

03 february
Launch of blast furnace No. 5

On 3 February 1973, the USSR’s biggest 3,240 cbm blast furnace No. 5 was put in operation. BF-5 was the first furnace of such volume in the Soviet Union and the last one built in blast furnace shop No. 1 of NLMZ.

The furnace had a round cast house, four tap holes and 32 hot blast tuyeres.

BF-5 was the first furnace of such volume in the Soviet Union and the last one built in blast furnace shop No. 1 of NLMZ. The launch of BF-5 enabled the plant to increase annual pig iron production to 6.2 million tonnes. The operating experience of BF-5 was later used to improve the design of large-capacity blast furnaces.

In 1973, the USSR’s output totalled 131 million tonnes of steel and 91 million tonnes of rolled products. Steelmaking production grew by 4.8%, downstream production by 4.5% and steel tubing by 3.7% compared with the previous year.

The country’s industrial output went up by 7.3% in 1973, instead of 5.8% as had been targeted. Thanks to commissioning of new facilities in the 1970s, the USSR’s iron and steel industry reached a stable steel output of around 160 million tonnes by the mid-1980s.

In 1973 construction of sinter strands at the sinter plant was completed. Fluxed magnesia-manganese sinter technology was implemented here for the first time in the domestic iron and steel industry, which provided an increase in pig iron output at no additional cost.

NLMK sinter production is currently the largest in the industry with an annual design capacity of more than 11.5 million tonnes of sinter.

15 december
The first slab produced by BOF-2

The domestic iron and steel industry had never before seen facilities similar to BOF-2. Its annual capacity was estimated at 8 million tonnes of slabs produced using 300-tonne BOFs, curved apron casting machines and the effective technology already proven at the first shop.

The shop was built on two square kilometres along with auxiliary facilities which would be up there with a present-day plant. New high unit capacity BOFs enabled the plant to implement advanced steel production technology. For example, it took 40–41 minutes to convert 160 tonnes of iron at the first BOF shop and only 32–36 minutes to convert twice as much iron at the second shop. The oxygen supply for blowing was tripled. The curved apron continuous slab casters were built at Uralmashzavod, the All- Russian Research and Design Institute of Metallurgical Engineering (VNIIMETMASH), I.P. Bardin Central Research Institute for Ferrous Metallurgy, Lengipromez and Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works.

The casting speed of these machines was double or triple the rate ever reached at BOF-1. The new machines were equipped with high-precision systems to measure and control the temperature of liquid steel in ladles, which is essential to ensure high quality slabs are cast.

On 15 December 1974, BOF-2 produced its first steel slab.

14 march
Stoilensky construction

On 14 March 1975, Stoilensky miners shipped the 10 millionth tonne of iron ore to the steelworkers. The following employees had the honour to take part in shipping of the milestone tonne: N. Antropov’s shift, excavator operator V. Drigailo and locomotive operator A. Shafran.

The design project for construction of Stoilensky was approved on 9 July 1975.

On 4 August 1975, the Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR issued the order for the construction of the Stoilensky plant at the Mining Administration premises and approved its charter and organisation.

On 31 December 1975, Oskolstroy and KMArudstroy Trusts started earth-moving operations at the industrial site.

28 october
Setting up blast furnace shop No. 2 at NLMZ

In 1976 Stoilensky and Altai-Koks were proclaimed All-Union shock work construction projects of the Central Committee of Komsomol. Leonid Brezhnev personally monitored their progress.

Construction of the key processing and auxiliary facilities began in 1976. A quartzite quarry was built using the plant’s own resources.

Blast furnace shop No. 2 was set up at NLMZ in August 1976, as soon as construction of the 3,200 cbm blast furnace No. 6 had begun.

01 may
Coke plant development

A large coke plant had been constructed at NLMZ by 1977. With eight shops spanning the total area of 70 hectares, NLMZ’s coke plant became one of the largest in Russia, producing more than 20 different products. Coal by-products and derivatives are used in manufacturing consumer goods and pharmaceuticals, the agriculture and energy industries as well as in road construction.

In May 1977 construction of the first coke battery started at Altai-Koks. Excavator operators and drivers made way for carpenters, concrete workers; then finishers, refractory men, installers and fitters. 22,000 tonnes of refractory brick of 1,200 brands was used for the battery coating.

Ivan Frantsenyuk

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1978–2005

Ivan Frantsenyuk was born in Vykhvatnovtsy village in the Kamenets-Podolsky District of Khmelnytsky Region.

He graduated fr om the Zhdanov Metallurgical Institute in 1951 as a metallurgical engineer. Between 1952 and 1954 Frantsenyuk worked as a process engineer and a senior process engineer in the Department of Chief Metallurgist at Kalinin Press Forging Plant in Voronezh.

In May 1954 he moved to Lipetsk and went to work at NLMZ as a shift manager of flat rolling shop No. 1. In 1955 Frantsenyuk was sent by the Ministry of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR to Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works, wh ere he worked as a mill roller at the cold-rolling shop until 1956. In June 1956 he was transferred back to NLMZ in Lipetsk.

From 1956 until 1978 Frantsenyuk went all the way from Shift Manager at FRS-1 to Chief Engineer of NLMZ.

Ivan Frantsenyuk was appointed Director of the plant in March 1978, by the order of the Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy. He was General Director of Novolipetsk plant between 1989 and 1993 and was elected General Director of NLMK in 1993.

He was directly involved as a leader in construction and commissioning of all large-scale facilities at NLMZ and later NLMK, starting from the first stage of the sinter plant, BOF-1, FRS-3, BF No. 4, FRS-4, FRS-5, BOF-2, BF No. 5 and BF No. 6.

In 1980, Ivan Frantsenyuk was awarded the USSR State Prize for development of new processes and machines for production of high-quality hot-rolled coiled steel and implementation at NLMZ, for the first time in the world, of a wide-strip mill with an annual output of more than 6 million tonnes of flat steel (NSHS-2000). Ivan Frantsenyuk was awarded the Hero of Socialist Labour title in 1984.

In 2004 he was elected President of NLMK.

He held more than 180 inventor’s certificates and patents for inventions in ferrous metallurgy and steelmaking automation and mechanisation. Frantsenyuk also wrote a great number of books and scientific papers, including “Ferrous Metallurgy. Iron, Pig Iron and Steel”, “Accelerated Cooling of Flat Steel”, and “Slag Processing Methods. Granulation. Foamed Slag Production”.

In recognition of Ivan Frantsenyuk’s forty-year contribution to the development of NLMK and Lipetsk, he was awarded the title of Honorary Lipetsk Citizen in1993.

Since 1998, by the resolution of the Lipetsk City Council, the square in front of the NLMK Community Centre was named after Ivan Frantsenyuk.

07 november
Launch of blast furnace No. 6

Blast furnace No. 6, with an annual production output of 2.2 million tonnes of pig iron, was commissioned on 7 November 1978. BF-6 was a result of the successful implementation of new technological solutions. Construction of the blast furnace was a major step on the way to automation and mechanisation of key processes.

The operation of BF-6 was fully automated, including an automated furnace running control system with hot stoves, feeding conveyors and BF slag granulation units. Workflow was controlled by a computer.

Thanks to equipment upgrades, cutting-edge technology and highly qualified personnel the shop was able to increase annual output to 2.9 million tonnes of pig iron.

The same year marked the 50th anniversary of the Studenovskoye deposit which the staff celebrated by producing 2.350 million tonnes of fluxing limestone.

23 april
Million tonne milestones at NLMZ

On 23 April 1979, the three millionth tonne of grain oriented steel was shipped to an instrument-making plant in the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic.

On 21 May 1979, blast furnace No. 6 produced its one millionth tonne of pig iron since launch. The design capacity of BF No. 6 was reached in four months instead of the projected six.

The mill’s design production output of 6.1 million tonnes was also reached. It has not been outstripped by any mill facility in the world to date.

In the 1970s, the problem of supplying the USSR with high-quality wide-strip flat steel, which had been in short supply, was largely solved. The production of building structures and large diameter pipes and development of the automotive and railcar-building industries were on the rise.

26 february
Carbon steel rolling shop

On 26 February 1980, the 20 millionth tonne of steel was produced at BOF-2.

On 18 April 1980, the country’s first cold-rolling carbon steel shop with an annual output capacity of 2.5 million tonnes of products and the world‘s most productive continuous rolling mill – Mill 2030 (up to 750 tonnes per hour) began operation. It was the day that the first automotive sheet was produced using the new equipment.

The shop was equipped with the most up-to-date and high-performance machines of the time. It supplied the demand for cold-rolled products by machine engineering and consumer electronics companies. The goods produced by NLMZ were used in manufacturing of complex devices for the automotive industry (exterior body parts made of steel with extra deep drawing properties) and household appliances (front panels of refrigerators and washing machines).

NLMZ plant’s products were highly competitive with leading foreign manufacturers, thanks to the computers used in the production process. Commissioning of the shop allowed for a significant reduction in the dependence of the country’s industry on imported cold-rolled products. Thanks to NLMZ starting production of first surface finish group steel products, AVTOVAZ was able to stop importing sheet metal altogether.

01 january
The 100 millionth tonne of pig iron

In 1981 NLMZ produced its 100 millionth tonne of post-war pig iron. The second stage of BOF-2 and Phase 2 of the first stage of the cold-rolling carbon steel shop were completed.

In 1981 the cold-rolling carbon steel shop started operating the country’s first and only continuous annealing machine with a design capacity of 500,000 tonnes per year.

The continuous annealing machine has the highest level of automation and makes it possible to optimise heat treatment modes and obtain homogeneous structure and stable metal characteristics. Steel processing on the continuous annealing machine meet the strictest requirements by customers in terms of surface finish, flatness and consistency of mechanical properties.

Construction of this machine enabled production of cold-rolled steel products of unique quality to satisfy the needs of the automotive industry and consumer electronics manufacturers: rolled products with the BH effect (bake hardening when paint coating is dried); rolled products with a high level of surface finish and flatness; rolled products made of new generation dual-phase advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) – in which their mechanical properties are not fixed and change in case of any stress; this phenomenon can be used to reduce a car’s weight and improve safety at the same time).

Due to the launch of the continuous annealing machine at NLMZ, domestic production of consumer electronics increased. The output of two- and three-compartment refrigerators grew by 17.5 times, from 143,000 to 2,500,000 units. Production of freezers increased from 7,000 in 1980 to 500,000 in 1988.

01 january
The first hot-dip galvanising unit

In 1982 the first hot-dip galvanising unit with an annual output capacity of 500,000 tonnes of galvanised steel sheets was commissioned at the cold-rolling carbon steel shop to process and galvanise steel strips.

The experience of the construction and operation of the shop was used to build similar facilities at other steelmaking plants around the country, in particular at Cherepovets Integrated Iron & Steel Mill and Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works.

30 june
From NLMZ to NLMK

Construction of a new large-scale and integrated system of facilities, the cold-rolling non-grain oriented flats shop, began in 1983.

On 30 June 1983, taking into account the plant’s complex structure and integrated workflow, Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works was reorganised into Novolipetsk pursuant to Order No. 600 of the Ministry of Ferrous Metallurgy.

The Central Laboratory of Environmental Protection (CLEP) began to operate in October 1983. It was re-established to ensure enterprise-wide compliance with the Regulation on Environmental Protection Activities approved by the order of the Ministry of Ferrous Metallurgy and application of the National Standard on Environmental Protection Management.

In June 1983 a pump unit automatic control system was used at the plant for the first time. It ensured reliable control of the water level in the piezometric tower and automated control of submersible pumps.

On 25 July 1983, Zapadnaya Station was commissioned, the first at Stoilensky to use automation and telemetry systems to control train traffic.

On 7 September 1983, the acceptance certificate for commissioning the quartzite mine was signed by a working committee.

On 16–17 December 1983, the first sample of iron ore concentrate was produced from unoxidised quartzite, after processing 1,000 tonnes of crude ore.

09 january
NLMK’s 50th anniversary

NLMK earned a number of awards on its anniversary. For example, 153 top performers of the plant were awarded the title of Honorary Employee of NLMK as well as commemorative tokens and valuable gifts to celebrate Steelworker’s Day and reward their long and excellent service.

A lot of top performers and winners of the socialist and anniversary competitions, who had successfully fulfilled their targets and socialist obligations, were awarded and commended: 467 employees of NLMK were given the Laureate of the Anniversary Award in Commemoration of the Plant’s 50th Anniversary title.

That year, along with NLMK’s anniversary, coke plant workers celebrated the 25th anniversary of their facility. Commendations were given to 125 employees, with records entered in their employment record books, while 135 top performing workers at the coke plant were awarded the NLMK Letter of Commendation.

A youth talent contest was held showcasing technological innovations under the slogan: “My first improvement idea for the 50th anniversary of the plant”, with over 450 ideas submitted. 305 of them were approved as labour-saving innovations.

On 9 January 1984, the youth Komsomol team headed by Mine Foreman S. Korendyasov produced the 50 millionth tonne of high grade iron ore.

On 28 February 1984, the first train load of Stoilensky concentrate was shipped to Lipetsk steelworkers.

On 25 December 1984, the youth Komsomol team headed by A. Kryuchkov reached one million tonne of concentrate mark at the beneficiation plant.

In 1984–1990, three sections of the beneficiation plant for wet magnetic separation with an annual design capacity of 4.8 million tonnes of concentrate were built and launched.

01 june
Reconstruction of type-2000 mill

The reconstruction of the type-2000 mill was completed in 1985. As a result, capacity increased from 5.88 million to 6.1 million tonnes per year. In October, NLMK started developing Lengipromez’s project proposals for design and construction of the Repair Shop Section (RSC), following the decision of the Ministry of Ferrous Metallurgy on the construction of a section of repair shops to produce spare parts and repair steelmaking equipment using CNC machines, robot modules, flexible manufacturing systems and computers.

In June 1985, NLMK introduced a shop-based management system at subsidiary Karamyshevsky Sovkhoz. A new NLMK Medical Unit health clinic with a patient capacity of 3,000 people per shift was opened in August.

01 july
Launch of the non-grain oriented flats shop

On 1 July 1986, the first stage of the NGO flats shop (flat rolling shop No. 5) was launched. The initial target for non-grain oriented steel to be shipped was outstripped by 2.3%. The NGO flats shop became the largest facility of its kind in Europe.

In 1986 the electrical engineering industry had a demand for non-grain oriented steel of 600,000 tonnes.

The launch of FRS-5 at the full capacity of 480,000 tonnes of NGO steel per year enabled electrical engineering enterprises to reduce consumption of steel in manufacturing of electrical machines by 15–20% and save up to three billion kWh each year for the national economy through cutting specific energy losses. This was equivalent to commissioning three hydro power plants similar to Sayano-Shushenskaya HPP.

01 november
NLMK’s new development strategy

Starting from January 1987, NLMK moved on to self-financing and self-sufficiency. Production, wages and social development relied entirely on the income the company generated. The strategy of the plant changed, as NLMK sought to expand its output of consumer goods.

By the late 1980s, the plant supplied its products to 7,000 destinations in more than 40 countries. Automotive, shipbuilding, heavy engineering and agricultural engineering companies, pipe and tube production enterprises and the power industry became regular consumers of NLMK’s goods.

In February 1987, the nondestructive inspection devices and systems (NIDS) shop using ionizing radiation sources was established. The shop was designed to ensure continuous operation of existing devices and systems for nondestructive inspection and testing of parameters of raw materials and products with specified accuracy; detect defects of parts, nodes, structures and welded joints of mechanical and power engineering equipment; implement new nondestructive inspection and testing aids and systems at all conversion stages. The NIDS shop ensured the quality of rolled products in terms of gage interference, and thickness control of galvanised and paint coating within the range of optimal values downstream; control of blast furnace smelting with reduced coke consumption and steady batch charging in blast furnace production; and optimal loading of hoppers with charging material in sinter, refractory and basic oxygen furnace production.

On 1 November 1987, the second stage of flat rolling shop No. 5 was launched. The annual plan was outstripped by 16.9% as FRS-5 shipped 39,442 tonnes of NGO steel above target.

The universally accepted technology of isotropic electrical steel production with double rolling was to be used at the shop. However, the plant’s employees, jointly with the Lipetsk branch of the Bardin Central Research Institute for Ferrous Metallurgy, implemented a one-step steel processing pattern, which made it possible to increase the annual output of cold-rolled steel to 500,000 tonnes. The same year, the shop’s employees and the Electrical Steel Research and Development Centre developed and implemented a more advanced half-organic electrically insulated “Isort” coating (instead of the phosphate coating stipulated in the contract).

In the course of FRS-5 operation, new products were continuously developed to replace imported goods.

01 july
Launch of Stinol production

On 1 July 1988, NLMK launched production of complex household appliances, which later grew to become the Stinol refrigerator manufacturing plant, the largest facility of its kind in the USSR and Europe. One-, two-and three-compartment refrigerators including those equipped with no-frost systems and freezers of various sizes were manufactured there.

As former Soviet Prime Minister Nikolai Ryzhkov, , wrote in his memoirs: “During the 19th party conference held in 1988, I was contacted, in my capacity of the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, by Ivan Frantsenyuk who asked for permission to use steel produced above the target to build a refrigerator shop at NLMK.”

The reinforced concrete products shop was set up at the precasting yard to build housing using the plant’s own resources. In August 1990, the shop was converted into a building structures and materials plant to increase annual housing construction to 30,000–40,000 square metres.

01 january
Development of consumer electronics manufacturing in Lipetsk

In January 1989, a shop was launched at NLMK to manufacture trailers for passenger cars, with an annual design capacity of 10,000 units. The first product, a wing panel for a ZAZ passenger car, was manufactured within a year.

A shop for the production of ’Sigran‘ synthetic granite, , was set up in 1989.

In addition, an electronic equipment shop was established at the premises of the printed circuit board site. The first goods it produced were electronic ignition modules for cars.

01 january
New production at Stoilensky

In 1990 three sections of the beneficiation plant for wet magnetic separation with an annual design capacity of 4.8 million tonnes of concentrate were commissioned at Stoilensky.

From May 1990, thanks to cooperation with foreign companies, the shop assembled and produced video cassette recorders, video players, TV sets, audio tape recorders and car audio systems. The devices were assembled using components supplied by foreign companies from Japan and South Korea. The shop manufactured Funai and Roadstar VCRs, Roadstar, GoldStar and Daytek TV sets, etc.

In November 1990, the Council of Ministers of the USSR, in an effort to create a robust competitive economic system, issued the Regulation on Establishment of Joint Stock Companies in Metallurgy to support the initiative of the Ministry of Metallurgy aimed at denationalising property during the transition to the market economy by establishing joint stock companies and associations in steelmaking. A team was organised at NLMK to transform the plant into a joint stock company, and the relevant work began.

01 december
Focus on environmental protection and automation

Khimmotolog, a joint venture established in 1991, completely took over all the functions related to processing oil waste and cutting fluids, which allowed almost complete elimination of emergency discharge of oil products into water or contamination of soil with oil. Seven years later, Khimmotolog completed liquidation of the 40,000 tonnes of oil containment ponds, which had accumulated earlier.
At solvent recovery shop No. 1 of the coke plant, the coke oven gas final cooling cycle was converted into a closed loop system.

In 1991 NLMK became the first plant in Russia to produce cold-rolled products from titanium and niobium-alloyed ultra low carbon steel (IF type) designed for die stamping of particularly complex components in the automotive industry. The content of carbon and nitrogen in the new steel was only thousandths of a percent. IF steel produced by NLMK is as good as any similar foreign-made steel in all criteria.

The new steel allowed for manufacturing complex products of a complex shape, as well as reducing the number of operations in stamping and welding processes, which was particularly valuable in manufacturing of highly complex parts in the automotive industry.

The same year, the plant became the first in Russia to launch a high-speed colour coating line (CCL) with a design capacity of 140,000 tonnes. NLMK was also the first Russian steelmaking plant to start manufacturing of the highest value-added product, pre-painted steel.

CCL-1 absorbed leading global achievements and was way ahead of its time – the real demand for its products evolved only in the late 1990s.

In December 1991, Avtomet, a research and development enterprise, was established as a subsidiary of NLMK to provide integrated automation services for the plant. Over four years, specialists implemented automation of the main shops RPS, FRS-3, FRS-5, BOF-1 and Refractory Shop. The most important developments and innovations include an automated control system for the finishing stand group of the type-2000 mill based on new-generation IBM PCs integrated into a single computer network; automated equipment repair control systems for FRS-5 and RPS; and an integrated accounting system of the plant.

03 november
Privatisation

In March 1992, a foreign trade advertising office was set up within the External Communications Department. NLMK’s corporate style was designed in cooperation with the Association of Designers of Russia.

In June 1992, BOF-1 started rebuilding the vertical continuous slab caster into a curved caster. The same year, in conjunction with the Bardin Central Research Institute for Ferrous Metallurgy and Bulgarian company Technoimportexport, an integrated steel processing facility was commissioned at BOF-1, which made it possible to improve the quality of electrical steel. In 1992–1993, FRS-5 implemented the technology for production of NGO steel with electrically insulated lacquer coatings.

On 3 November 1992, Joint-Stock Company Stoilensky Mining and Processing Plant (Stoilensky) was founded following privatisation of the state-run company of the same name to be its legal successor in accordance with the constituent documents.

Pursuant to Decision No. 823 of the Lipetsk Region State Property Management Committee dated 31 December 1992, the state-run enterprise The Yu. V. Andropov Novolipetsk Iron & Steel Works honoured with the Lenin Order and the October Revolution Order was reorganised into the Novolipetsk Steel Open Type Joint Stock Company.

02 july
Launch of Stinol plant

On 28 January 1993, NLMK acquired a new organisational status: the plant became Novolipetsk Steel Open Type Joint Stock Company. The company was registered by Resolution No. 50 of the Head of Administration of Levoberezhny District of Lipetsk dated 28 January 1993.

The shares were distributed among the company’s employees. In the mid-1990s, the bulk of NLMK’s shares were consolidated by investors.

On 2 July 1993, Stinol, a major refrigerator and freezer plant with a design capacity of 1 million units a year, was put in warranty period operation.

01 october
1995

In the autumn of 1995, NLMK, along with 100 other leading Russian companies, was awarded the Birmingham Torch Award in Birmingham (Alabama, USA), for successful economic survival and development in the face of adverse conditions.

01 january
Acquisition of Dolomit

NLMK acquired Dolomit, a dolomite mining and processing facility, which fully satisfies the plant’s demand for this raw material.

Dolomit is the leading metallurgical dolomite producer in Russia and the only dolomite producer in the Central Black Earth economic area. The company has developed the Dankovskoye dolomite deposit in Lipetsk Region since 1932. The company’s product range includes flux and converter dolomite, dolomite powder, and crushed stone for construction and road building. The proximity of the facility to the well-developed transport infrastructure makes it strategically attractive for customers.

Dolomit produces about 2 million tonnes of products a year. Russia is the primary dolomite market served. Steelmaking enterprises are key consumers of dolomite.

12 august
Overcoming the crisis of 1998

In the late 1990s, Russia had to face adverse economic conditions. The management of NLMK responded promptly and efficiently and made a number of important decisions:

  • Optimise organisational structure and management system for production and auxiliary departments.

  • Improve the system for purchasing raw materials and fuel and power resources and streamline the sales system and marketing organisation.

  • Develop and approve the programme for the plant’s reconstruction and technical upgrade.

On 24 April 1998, JSC Stoilensky GOK was reorganised into an open joint-stock company – OJSC.

On 12 August 1998, Open Type Joint Stock Company Novolipetsk Steel was reorganised into OJSC Novolipetsk Steel (NLMK) based on the decision of the annual general meeting of shareholders dated 1 August 1998.

24 december
Acquisition of Stagdok

In 1999 NLMK acquired Stagdok, a fluxing limestone production and processing company which fully satisfies the plant’s demand for this raw material.

Studenovskaya Joint Stock Mining Company (Stagdok) is developing the Sitovsky site of the Sokolsko-Sitovskoye fluxing limestone deposit located 2.5 km north-east of Lipetsk. The quarry is 1.5 km long, 0.5 km wide and an average 46 m deep.

The main types of goods produced are fluxing and processing limestone with fine, medium and coarse fractions. Limestone is mined using open-pit mining methods and blasting.

The metals industry and the sugar industry are key consumers of these products.

On 24 December 1999, reconstruction of the mining-and-transport system at Stoilensky was completed. The commissioning certificate was signed at 10:00 a.m.

20 april
Production upgrade at NLMK and Stoilensky

On 20 April 2000, reconstruction of secondary and tertiary gyratory crushers was completed at Stoilensky. Due to the construction of additional facilities over a period of three months, NLMK was able to increase concentrate output to 12 million tonnes per year.

In 2000 Novolipetsk began implementing a large-scale technical upgrade programme, which aimed to increase steel production output and improve the quality of steel products and production efficiency. The plant substantially increased investment in production development and capital repairs of major units, spending 3.19 billion rubles to achieve these goals.

Over 220 billion rubles was invested in production upgrade in and before 2012, with more than 190 projects implemented.

NLMK shipped 8 million tonnes of steel products in 2000. The plant’s commodity output grew by 8% compared with 1999. Overall, 7.5 million tonnes of rolled products was produced for an 8% growth rate, including 4.7 million tonnes of flat steel with 18.2% growth).

28 october
Launch of the continuous hot-dip galvanising line

In 2001 NLMK reached its full capacity utilisation for the first time in a decade. The amount of products shipped to the domestic market increased significantly. NLMK supplied about 2.1 million tonnes of steel to domestic customers, 50% more than the 1999 figure. NLMK’s supply enabled Russian companies, in particular automotive plants, to drastically reduce their imports. More than 70% of metal produced was exported. The revenue from sales totalled 38.54 billion rubles in 2000. The gross profit amounted to 15.3 billion rubles.

A state-of-the-art coke battery, unparalleled anywhere in Russia or the CIS, was put in operation. Only two machines of this kind had been launched in Russia over the previous decade, both of them at NLMK. The new coke battery was a facility with 3,500 tonnes of steel structures, 22,000 tonnes of refractory and 3,500 tonnes of production equipment. Microprocessor devices installed on the battery were used to control production processes aimed at ensuring the efficiency of coke gas combustion and preventing discharge of coke gas into the atmosphere.

Ten specialised organisations participated in the construction of the coke battery. NLMK specialists completed adjustment of the equipment assembled.

The dust free coke pushing system used on the new coke battery allowed 490 tonnes of dust to be collected each year and the total amount of atmospheric dust emissions to be reduced by 80%, around 1,500 tonnes per year. The overall costs to NLMK of the launch totalled more than 500 million rubles.

90% of all equipment was produced domestically.

The second continuous hot-dip galvanising line was launched at FRS-5. It was based on the continuous annealing machine previously employed. Its annual production output totalled 150,000 tonnes of galvanised metal, 0.3–0.5 mm thick, which was in strong demand on the market.

The new production line was unique because it had been rebuilt from the continuous annealing machine. The work was completed over an exceptionally short period of time: it took less than two years to implement the project. The services of foreign companies Stein Heurtey (France), ANDRITZ Sundwig and Menzel & Krause were enlisted for the project. This reduced time frame also enabled the plant to leave its competitors in the hot-dip galvanised steel market well behind. The machine was rebuilt by specialists of NLMK’s engineering centre and repair plant. The reconstruction was 5 times cheaper than construction of an entirely new production line.

09 january
100 million tonnes of iron ore concentrate

On 9 January 2002, the beneficiation plant at Stoilensky produced its 100 millionth tonne of iron ore concentrate since the launch of its first stage in 1983.

In March 2002, a railway siding was put in operation at Stoilensky on the +65 m level of the north-eastern and eastern pit walls. The commissioning of a direct railway track enabled the plant to stop transporting overburden rock and high grade iron ore by truck partially from the +50 m level of the eastern pit wall.

In June 2002, for the first time in the history of Stoilensky, 1.019 million tonnes of concentrate and 134,000 tonnes of sinter ore was shipped to customers.

In September 2002, 14 employees of Stoilensky received upper governmental awards for their long-term and excellent service and professional achievements from Evgeny Savchenko, Governor of Belgorod Region, by order of the Russian President Vladimir Putin. Stoilensky’s cutting-edge production technology is ensured by the continuous search for innovation and creative approach.

15 february
The new grain oriented steel production workflow

A new technological workflow for grain oriented steel production was implemented at NLMK in 2003. It enabled the plant to improve its output of 0.27–0.30 mm thickness high-quality steel and start production of 0.23 mm thick sheets.

The new technological workflow included basic oxygen steelmaking, steel casting using two new curved apron casting machines and improved secondary metallurgy methods. Subsequent hot rolling operations were performed on the wide-strip mill at flat rolling shop No. 3.

The new workflow for production of anisotropic electrical steel allowed NLMK to ensure:

  • Homogeneous structure and stable magnetic characteristics along the full length of strips due to reduction of impurities in steel and production of 20-tonne hot-rolled coils.

  • Steel ductility and drop in the consumption index by 1.3 times, in spite of an increase in silicon content to 3.20%.

  • Doubling of high grade steel production and improvement of its competitiveness.

Following the new workflow implementation, outdated production facilities electric arc furnace shop and flat rolling shop No. 1 were decommissioned, which enabled the plant to reduce its environmental impact significantly. The new equipment was commissioned as part of the Technical Upgrade Programme launched at NLMK in 2000.

On 15 February 2003, the beneficiation plant of Stoilensky produced record output of 36,400 tonnes of iron ore concentrate, with the daily target of 33,400 tonnes.

In November 2003, Stoilensky set a record in delivery volume. Steelworkers received 1.173 million tonnes of iron ore (1.002,4 million tonnes of concentrate and 170,600 tonnes of sinter ore).

28 october
Modernisation of NLMK power system

In 2004 NLMK became the first steelmaking plant in Russia to use a unique welding machine for anisotropic electrical steel production. Instead of electrical resistance welding with disk-shaped electrodes, laser welding was used. The launch of this unit helped reduce the welding time by three and improve the output of the electrically insulated coating machine by 2,000–2,500 tonnes per year. The welding machine also ensured better connection of steel strips with fracture strength of at least 90% of base metal’s strength. The new welding unit was worth 1.3 million rubles

Modernisation of power facilities was completed at NLMK in 2004. As a result, the plant’s self-sufficiency in energy grew to 40%.

A system of up-to-date high pressure steam generation equipment with a capacity of 220 tonnes per hour was put in operation at NLMK’s cogeneration plant. Investment in the project totalled 210 million rubles. Following this upgrade, NLMK’s energy capacity improved and its self-sufficiency in energy increased to 40%. The load on the unified energy system was reduced significantly. Annual power consumption dropped by 265 million kWh. Power generated by NLMK turned out to cost half as much as power purchased from RAO UES of Russia.

The commissioned system included a boiler, auxiliary units, measuring instruments as well as an automated process control system and a flue gas composition control system. A mixture of blast furnace gas and coke oven gas was to be used as fuel for steam generation, with pressure of up to 100 atm and temperature of 5,200 °C.

15 december
IPO at the London Stock Exchange

In 2005, Russia’s first continuous hot-dip galvanising line was launched at NLMK. It was able to produce hot-dip galvanised steel plates up to 4 mm thick, widely used in construction. Continuous application of galvanised coating on strips on this line is 5 times more productive and reduces zinc consumption by four compared to galvanising of flat products by dipping them into molten zinc. The commissioning of the hot-dip galvanising line allowed NLMK to stop importing galvanised steel up to 4 mm thick.

On 15 December 2005, NLMK had an IPO at the London Stock Exchange, placing 420 million common shares (42 million GDS), which accounted for 7% of share capital. The offering price for the IPO at the LSE was set at $1.45 per share, $14.50 per GDS (10 shares). Following the IPO procedure, NLMK capitalisation totalled about $8.7 billion.

UBS Limited and Merrill Lynch International jointly acted as IPO bookrunners.

Alexey Lapshin

President of NLMK in 2006–2012

Alexey Lapshin graduated from the Orsk Petroleum Technology Vocational Training School and the All-Union Distance Learning Polytechnic Institute.

He began his career at Gaiskiy GOK in 1967, and then worked for Southern Urals Nickel Plant between 1975 and 1994, starting as a foreman and rising through the ranks to become Deputy CEO.

In 2006 he worked as Managing Director at DanSteel A/S and as a management and technical consultant with DanSteel A/S prior to that.

Alexey Lapshin was Head of Department at Rumelco from 1999 to 2002, being at the same time a member of the Board of Directors at NLMK.

In the period from 1994 to 1999 Lapshin held positions in various steelmaking companies and worked as a consultant on the development of the Stinol refrigerator manufacturing plant in Lipetsk.


28 october
Capacity expansion

In 2006 the Board of Directors of NLMK approved the key parameters for Stage 2 of the Technical Upgrade Programme for 2007–2011.

The primary objectives of Stage 2 of the Technical Upgrade Programme were:

1. Improvement of crude steel output by 40%, from 9 to 12.4 million tonnes per year.

2. Construction of new blast furnace No. 7 with an annual capacity of 3.4 million tonnes of pig iron.

3. Reconstruction and capital repairs of three out of five operating blast furnaces.

4. Reconstruction of basic oxygen furnace shops.

In 2006 NLMK acquired Independent Transportation Company LLC (NTK), a logistics operator providing 100% of the company’s railway transportation.

NTK was a key logistics asset of the Company, ensuring timely delivery of raw materials for steelmaking and shipment of finished products to customers in Russia and abroad. NTK coordinated interaction with Russian Railways and port authorities regarding export operations.

In 2006 NLMK acquired VIZ-Steel, Russia’s second-largest electrical steel producer with an annual capacity of 200,000 tonnes. VIZ-Steel’s semi-finished product needs are entirely supplied by NLMK.

VIZ-Steel is an electrical steel production facility located in Yekaterinburg. It produces cold-rolled electrical steel. The production capacity of VIZ-Steel totals around 200,000 tonnes of electrical steel per year. The company’s share of the Russian grain oriented steel market is 56%, with 11% of the global market.

Altai-Koks coke plant satisfying 100% of NLMK’s demand for coke was acquired in 2006.

Altai-Koks is the leading Russian coke plant producing high-quality coke and chemical products. The production capacity of Altai-Koks totals 3.8 million tonnes of six-percent humidity coke. The plant was to commission a new coke battery with a capacity of 1.14 million tonnes at the end of 2006.

Danish steel rolling company DanSteel A/S, a producer of thick steel plates, was acquired in 2006. The semi-finished product needs of DanSteel A/S are completely supplied by NLMK’s steel slabs.

The annual production output of DanSteel A/S is about 500,000 tonnes of hot-rolled thick plates. DanSteel A/S has state-of-the-art production facilities. For a few years, NLMK had successfully cooperated with the Danish company, being DanSteel’s key supplier of steel slabs since 2002.

In 2006 NLMK and Duferco Group set up a joint venture including one steelmaking facility and five rolling mills as well as a network of steel service centres in Europe and the USA. The JV’s total output of finished products was estimated at 4.5 million tonnes.

The companies approved a large-scale technical upgrade and development programme. Total investment was estimated at €375 million. Through the JV with Duferco, NLMK planned to increase slab production by 3.4 million tonnes, while Duferco, which had been facing a shortfall in slab capacity, aimed to expand the output of high value-added goods as well as steel products of special grades.

The JV included the following companies:

  • Carsid S.A. (Marcinelle, Belgium) – a slab producer with a production capacity of 2.1 million tonnes per year.

  • Duferco La Louvière S.A. (La Louvière, Belgium) – a rolled steel producer, with an annual hot-rolling capacity of 2.0 million tonnes, cold-rolling capacity of 1.6 million tonnes, and wire rod capacity of 0.36 million tonnes.

  • Duferco Clabecq S.A. (Ittre, Belgium) – a thick plate producer with a production capacity of 0.8 million tonnes per year.

  • Duferco Coating S.A.S. (Strasbourg and Beautor, France) – a coated steel producer comprising two production assets: Sorral (with an annual hot-dip galvanised steel capacity of 0.32 million tonnes and pre-painted steel capacity of 0.12 million tonnes) and Beautor (with an annual cold-rolling capacity of 0.35 million tonnes and electrogalvanised steel capacity of 0.33 million tonnes).

  • Duferco Farrell Corp. (Farrell, Pennsylvania, USA) – a flat rolled steel producer with an annual hot-rolling capacity of 1.8 million tonnes and cold-rolling capacity of 0.8 million tonnes.

Acciaierie Grigoli S.p.a. (Verona, Italy) – a producer of heavy plates and ingots with an annual heavy plate production capacity of 0.6 million tonnes.

In addition, the joint venture includes a distribution group of nine service centres selling products manufactured by the JV and other producers. The service centres are located in France, Belgium and Czech Republic.

28 october
JV with China

In 2007 NLMK and the Chinese corporation Tebian Electric Apparatus Stock Co., Ltd. (TBEA) launched a project to set up a joint Russian-Chinese service centre for processing and selling electrical steel. The agreement was signed by company’ CEOs during the Second Russian-Chinese Economic Forum in Moscow.

According to the companies’ plans, the joint venture TBEA – NLMK (Shenyang) Metal Product Co. Ltd was to start its operation in the city of Shenyang (Liaoning Province, China). The JV primarily offered metal processing (slitting of steel coils) and distribution of GO and NGO steel produced by NLMK. The term of the agreement was 20 years. Total project investment amounted to $12 million.

In 2007 JV NLMK-Duferco acquired steel rolling company Sharon Coating (Winner Steel) based in Pennsylvania, USA.

Winner Steel is one of the largest American independent producers of galvanised steel. Its facilities include three continuous hot-dip galvanising lines with a total capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per year. The overall production output in 2006 was 0.6 million tonnes. Winner Steel’s 2006 sales revenue totalled around $427 million.

In 2007 NLMK acquired Maxi-Group, which included a number of companies involved in steelmaking, ferrous scrap collection and processing, and steel rolling.

In terms of technology and organisation, the steelmaking division of Maxi-Group is based on the mini-mill concept, both in operation and in construction terms, located in Sverdlovsk Region, Central regions of Russia, and the Volga Region. The company’s product mix includes long products (2.4 million tonnes), rebar (1.3 million tonnes) and metalware (0.55 million tonnes).

The scrap collection and processing division currently includes more than 300 facilities with an overall annual capacity of 3 million tonnes of scrap, and operates in 38 Russian regions. According to preliminary estimates, the volume of collected and processed scrap was to reach 2.3 million tonnes in 2007

01 july
Laser processing of grain oriented steel

In 2008 the international credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s upgraded its corporate credit rating of NLMK from BB+, outlook stable, to BBB- level, outlook stable. The upgrade made NLMK the first Russian steel company to be granted an investment grade status.

In July 2008, a new desliming unit, was put into operation at Altai-Koks. It was equipped with an up-to-date automated control system to produce high-quality goods and handle chemical waste disposal, reducing man-hours required for cleaning tar storage facilities. Investment in the project was 57 million rubles.

In 2008 NLMK completed the acquisition of 100% stakes in Novexco (Cyprus) Limited in Cyprus and Novex Trading (Swiss) S.A. in Switzerland, both trading companies. This transaction was in line with the Company’s strategy to establish an international trading department.

The acquisition of these trading companies was instrumental to improve control over the Company’s export sales to core markets and enabled it to consolidate revenue from trading companies.

In 2008 NLMK commissioned a laser beam machine and developed a technology for GO steel laser processing with a specific loss rate of P1.7/50≤1.00 W/kg. Use of this steel allowed the Company to reduce electrical operating costs by 10%.

28 october
NLMK Russia Long established

NLMK Russia Long, a subsidiary of NLMK, was established to improve the efficiency of NLMK Group’s long steel production management. The new company was to become responsible for management of steelmaking facilities, both operating and under construction, involved in long steel and metalware production: OJSC Nizhne-Serginsky Metallurgical and Metalware Plant, CJSC Uralsky Plant of Precision Alloys, CJSC Berezovsky Electrometallurgical Plant, CJSC Kaluzhsky Electrometallurgical Plant, and LLC Vtorchermet NLMK. These companies became part of NLMK Group’s Long Products Division, producing commercial billet, wire rod, rebar, wire, nails, metal mesh and fixing hardware.

In 2009 NLMK entirely stopped discharging waste water into the Voronezh River, as part of the Technical Upgrade Programme, reducing river water consumption by two thirds. The company was able to do this by substantially upgrading the industrial water supply system and implementing a new process flow. NLMK built a new pipeline system and launched new pump stations, also renovating the existing ones. This helped improve waste water quality, making it possible to reuse waste water rather than taking in fresh river water.

01 december
Launch of type-150 mill at Berezovsky Electrometallurgical Plant

In 2010 NLMK acquired the assets of LLC VMI Recycling Group located in Moscow Region, which owned four scrap collection and processing sites with a capacity of up to 500,000 tonnes of scrap per year.

In December 2010, NLMK Russia Long commissioned a new long steel production facility with an annual capacity of about 1 million tonnes in Berezovsky.

The shop was equipped with up-to-date equipment from leading global manufacturers – Danieli, SMS Meer and Sund Birsta. The basic process equipment was a high-capacity double-strand type-150 mill with a rolling speed of up to 110 metres per second, ensuring high quality of finished products. The new facility began producing rebar (No. 6 to 16) as well as wire rod with a diameter of 5.5-22 mm.

NLMK Russia Long was the first steelmaker in Russia to launch production of A500C class heat-strengthened reinforcing steel in coils with a diameter of 6.0–12.0 mm. Moreover, NLMK Russia Long began producing wire rods for cold heading, i.e. for manufacturing metalware by cold die-forging, as well as wire rods made from high-carbon and special welding steels for the Russian market.

28 october
Launch of blast furnace No. 7

In 2011 NLMK conducted hot testing of its new blast furnace No. 7 with an annual capacity of 3.4 million tonnes of pig iron. BF-7 is the first blast furnace built in Russia in 25 years and the key project under NLMK’s Technical Upgrade Programme until 2012.

The BF-7 project was based on the best available environmental technologies, including highly efficient dust collection systems, a closed loop water cycle, and maximum use of by-products to generate power required in production. All slag from blast furnace processes was to be reprocessed into crushed stone used in construction.

NLMK’s new 150 MW recovery cogeneration plant was launched at the Lipetsk site in 2011. It was designed to process blast furnace gas from blast furnace No. 7.

With the new recovery cogeneration plant launched at the Lipetsk site, NLMK’s power generation capacity increased by 45%, to 482 MW, bringing the level of energy self-sufficiency from 47% up to 56%, regardless of the expansion of the blast furnace and steelmaking capacity. Investment in the project was 6.8 billion rubles.

Overall investment in the construction of the blast furnace, recovery cogeneration plant and BF infrastructure totalled 43 billion rubles.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) awarded the project a prize for its model integrated energy-saving strategy, promotion of best management practices and skills related to innovative environmental technologies and energy management solutions, which allowed gross emissions to be reduced by 15 times compared with the old technology.

In 2011 NLMK closed a deal to acquire the remaining 50% stake in Steel Invest and Finance (SIF) from Duferco Group. The transaction resulted in SIF becoming a 100% owned subsidiary of NLMK. Following the acquisition, NLMK established its new business divisions – NLMK Europe and NLMK USA comprising all international assets of the Group.

NLMK Europe division consolidated the Group’s assets in the European Union. It comprised six steel rolling production assets, in particular hot-rolling including for thick plates, cold-rolling, galvanising and pre-painting facilities as well as a network of service and distribution centres. The division employs 3,000 people. NLMK’s business model is unique for Europe and based on stable supply of semi-finished products (slabs) from Russia to European facilities located close to customers that produce flat high value-added products.

NLMK USA comprises three flat steel production facilities – NLMK Indiana, NLMK Pennsylvania (formerly, Duferco Farrell) and Sharon Coating. The division has an electric arc furnace (EAF) at NLMK Indiana with a capacity of 730,000 tonnes and steelmaking facilities with 2.7 million tonnes of capacity producing slabs, hot-rolled, cold-rolled and galvanised steel. The new division brought additional benefits through a common distribution setup in the USA, in particular for pipe and tube production as well as machine building.

In 2011 processing unit IV was commissioned at Stoilensky’s beneficiation plant. Following the launch, the iron ore concentrate output went up by 2 million tonnes, bringing the total annual concentrate production capacity to 14 million tonnes.

On 28 October 2011, the official commissioning ceremony for the new quenching & tempering line was held at NLMK Clabecq. Implementation of the project helped ensure sustainable development of NLMK Clabecq and overcome consequences of the economic global crisis. The annual capacity of the line is 250,000 tonnes, which means that one third of NLMK Clabecq’s products will pass through the quenching & tempering line.

NLMK Clabecq produces a wide range of thick plates, including light plates, which are distinguished by high-quality surface finish and adjustable flatness and thickness.

In 2011 CCL-3 improved the Company’s output of finished painted strips, 0.3–0.8 mm thick and 700–1,250 mm wide. These products enjoy stable demand in Russia, as they are used in manufacturing of building structures, including metal roof tiles, profiled panels, sandwich panels, and interior and exterior cladding. Strips produced at the new line are thinner than ever before.

In 2011 NLMK was granted the right to develop the third mine field of the Usinsk coal deposit (Usinsky-3) located in the northern part of the Komi Republic. The Usinsk deposit is located in the north-western part of the Pechora coal basin, 45 km south-west of the Vorkuta deposit in Komi. The Usinsk-3 deposit has commercial reserves of over 227 million tonnes of high-quality hard coking coal of Zh and KZh grades in C1+C2 categories.

In 2011 the Lipetsk site completed upgrade of a continuous casting machine (CCM-8) with a capacity of 2.5 million tonnes per year. CCM-8 was the fifth machine to be renovated at the Lipetsk site.

Its commissioning enabled the plant to launch production of slabs 355 mm thick, while slabs produced by continuous casting machines of this type in Russia are typically 300 mm thick. This reconstruction allowed NLMK to streamline the production of thick plates, in particular in subsidiary European companies – DanSteel and Clabecq. Thick plates are in high demand in the machine-building and energy sectors.

As part of the project, the CCM was fully revamped, including replacement of casting stands and installation of closed loop water cooling systems. CCM-8 is the first in Russia to use a dynamic secondary cooling model to improve the surface quality and internal structure of billets. The facility is fully equipped with an advanced automation and instrumentation system.

NLMK’s new 300-tonne BOF was put in operation in Lipetsk in 2011. Alongside other Technical Upgrade Programme activities, the launch of the new BOF enabled a 36% increase in steelmaking capacity at the Lipetsk site to 12.4 million tonnes per year.

In 2011 NLMK acquired National Laminations Group, a service centre in India specialising in electrical grain oriented steel cutting and distribution.

National Laminations Group is an anisotropic (grain oriented) steel processing and distribution company located in Mumbai. It has an annual processing capacity of 16,000 tonnes. The company also has warehousing facilities with a capacity of 40,000 tonnes located 20 km from Mumbai, close to the port, which facilitates delivery of NLMK’s grain oriented steel from Russia.

28 october
Rolling mill upgrade at DanSteel

In 2012 NLMK DanSteel A/S, a Danish company within NLMK Europe Plate Division, launched production on a new 4.2 m thick plate mill, adding new products to the Company’s portfolio. The project was implemented as part of the Company’s strategy to strengthen its positions in the thick plate markets, and was worth more than €100 million. For more details please click here.

In March 2012, the second concentrate delivery route was commissioned at Stoilensky, as part of a large-scale project for construction of Start-up Facility IV of the beneficiation plant. The route is designed to provide stable concentrate delivery from the new section, as well as reduce loading, forming and dispatch time.

April
Launch of NLMK Kaluga

NLMK Kaluga, a state-of-the-art EAF long steel facility in the central region of Russia, was commissioned in April 2013.

NLMK began construction of the mill in the Vorsino industrial park located 70 km from Moscow in 2008, investing 38 billion rubles in the project. The annual capacity of NLMK Kaluga amounted to 1.5 million tonnes of steel and 0.9 million tonnes of rolled products. The EAF shop includes an electric arc furnace, a ladle furnace and an 8-strand continuous casting machine designed to produce billets 100x100 mm, 125x125 mm, 150x150 mm and 160x160 mm in cross section and 6–12 m long. The equipment was supplied by Siemens VAI Metals Technologies (Austria).

The rolling shop includes a type-400/215 small and medium section mill (SMS Meer, Italy) producing AI class plain rebar 10–20 mm in diameter; A500C periodic class rebar 10–40 mm in diameter; as well as sections (25–100 mm equal angles, channels No. 5–12 and beams No. 8 and 10). Rolling capacity can potentially be expanded to 1.5 million tonnes by installing another rolling mill (medium section).

01 february
Strategy 2017

NLMK Group’s new development strategy, Strategy 2017, was presented in February 2014. It includes a total investment of $1.6 billion and targets $1 billion in additional gains each year. The strategy is focused on unlocking the Company’s hidden potential by boosting operational efficiency across the entire production chain, enhancing vertical integration in key raw materials, increasing sales of high value-added (HVA) products, and pursuing environmental and process safety as well as human capital development programmes.

Key objectives of Strategy 2017:

1. Leadership in production efficiency

  • Fully implement NLMK Production System

  • Achieve target net gains of $330 million a year

2. World-class resource base

  • Achieve full self-sufficiency in iron ore with a flexible charge material mix (pellets, sinter, sinter ore)

  • Reduce consumption of high-cost resources

  • Achieve target net gains of $480 million a year

3. Market leadership in strategic geographies

  • Boost steel product sales to 16.3 million tonnes versus 14.9 million tonnes in 2013

  • Bring the share of high value-added products in total sales to 40% versus 35% in 2013

  • Increase the share of domestic sales to 45 percent versus 39 percent in 2013

  • Achieve target net gains of $190 million a year

4. Leadership in sustainable development and safety

  • Minimise environmental impact on a systematic basis

  • Ensure full compliance with occupational health and safety standards

  • Achieve industry-wide leadership in labour productivity supported by motivated and engaged personnel

March
NLMK Group changes dividend policy

The Board of Directors approved NLMK’s new dividend policy. According to the new dividend policy, dividends are to be paid on a quarterly basis with the payout in the range of 50% of net income and 50% of free cash flow calculated based on US GAAP consolidated financial statements, if Net Debt/EBITDA is 1.0x or less.

June
NLMK Group opens unified call centre

NLMK Group (LSE: NLMK), Russia’s top steel-producing company and one of the most efficient steel companies in the world; announces the opening of a unified sales service centre to serve the Company’s domestic and international clients. Unified call-centre telephone number: +7 (495) 134 44 45.

June
NLMK Group launches new green energy facility

NLMK Group has successfully completed hot testing and launched operation of a new top-pressure recovery turbine (TRT), a green energy-generating facility, at its Lipetsk production site. Top-pressure recovery turbines generate energy using excess blast furnace gas pressure. Blast furnace gas produced during the smelting of hot metal in blast furnaces at Novolipetsk is also channeled to a heat power plant and a recovery cogeneration plant for captive energy generation.

August
NLMK Kaluga reaches two million tonne marker

NLMK Kaluga, a new generation EAF plant (part of NLMK Long Products) that manufactures a wide range of long products used in construction, has produced its second million tonnes of steel. The launch of NLMK Kaluga in July 2013 was the Event of the Year in Russian ferrous metallurgy. The plant is based on the mini-mill concept of locating EAF steelmaking and rolling operations in close proximity to sources of raw materials and consumers of finished goods.

May
Сhanges to NLMK Belgium Holdings’ (NBH)

In 2015, NLMK Group and Belgian SOGEPA (Societe Wallonne de Gestion et de Participations S.A.)  agreed on changes to NLMK Belgium Holdings’ (NBH) ownership structure and governance. The parties signed an agreement increasing SOGEPA’s interest in NBH from 20.5% to 49%.

In March 2015The Board of Directors approved NLMK’s new dividend policy. According to the new dividend policy, dividends are to be paid on a quarterly basis with the payout in the range of 50% of net income and 50% of free cash flow calculated based on US GAAP consolidated financial statements, if Net Debt/EBITDA is 1.0x or less.

In 2015, NLMK Group and Belgian SOGEPA (Societe Wallonne de Gestion et de Participations S.A.) agreed on changes to NLMK Belgium Holdings’ (NBH) ownership structure and governance. The parties signed an agreement increasing SOGEPA’s interest in NBH from 20.5% to 49%.

NBH comprises the production companies and service centres of the NLMK Europe Strip Division (NLMK La Louvière, NLMK Strasbourg, NLMK Coating, NLMK Jemappes Steel Center, NLMK Manage Steel Center and NLMK Profil Batiment), and two NLMK Europe Plate production companies (NLMK Verona and NLMK Clabecq).

Under the new agreement, the NBH board of directors was be increased to include four representatives of NLMK Group and three representatives of SOGEPA. SOGEPA also received board seats at the principal production subsidiaries of NBH.

In May 2015, NLMK launched an innovative environmental facility – a biochemical waste water treatment facility at coke and chemical operations at the Lipetsk production site.

The facility is unique in Russia and employs a custom technology developed by Russian scientists for deep biochemical water purification from phenols, rhodanides, ammoniacal nitrogen and its oxides. The 160 m³/hour facility was designed using the best available technologies, and provided a twenty-fold improvement in the quality of treatment of coke and chemical operations waste water for reuse in the closed-loop water cycle.

All infrastructure and utilities were installed above ground on an isolated concrete area equipped with a rain, melt and drain water collector, preventing any chance of groundwater pollution in the event of a containment failure and providing twenty-fold reduction in air emissions of specific pollutants that are generated as industrial waste evaporates.

Total investment into the project which was implemented as part of NLMK’s Environmental Programme 2020 exceed RUB 2 billion.

In June 2015, NLMK launched operation of a new top-pressure recovery turbine (TRT), a green energy-generating facility, at its Lipetsk production site. Top-pressure recovery turbines generate energy using excess blast furnace gas pressure. Blast furnace gas produced during the smelting of hot metal in blast furnaces at Novolipetsk is also channeled to a heat power plant and a recovery cogeneration plant for captive energy generation.

The launched TRT is part of a complex with a total design capacity of 28 MW. Launch of the second TRT is scheduled in 2016. The project set to increase the plant’s energy self-sufficiency from 54% to 56%. The TRT will therefore reduce the amount of energy that must be purchased for the plant by 200 million kWh per year, which accounts for approximately 6% of total purchased energy. Investment in the two TRTs is estimated at 1.9 billion rubles.


In June 2015 NLMK Group announced the opening of a unified sales service centre to serve the Company’s domestic and international clients. Unified call-centre telephone number: +7 (495) 134 44 45.

In August 2015 NLMK Kaluga, a new generation EAF plant (part of NLMK Long Products) that manufactures a wide range of long products used in construction, produced its second million tonnes of steel. The launch of NLMK Kaluga in July 2013 was the Event of the Year in Russian ferrous metallurgy. The plant is based on the mini-mill concept of locating EAF steelmaking and rolling operations in close proximity to sources of raw materials and consumers of finished goods.

29 november
Start up of the Pellet plant

NLMK group completed successfully the main investment project of «Strategies 2017» – construction of the Pelletizing plant at Stoilensky. The production capacity of the Pelletizing plant amounts 6 mln tones of pellets per year. The equipment allows if necessary to increase capacity of the complex by 20% up to 7,2 mln tones of pellets per year.

Hi-tech complex was constructed over two years. The active phase of realization of the largest project in the region with total investment amount  approximately $680 mln (34 billion rubles) started in 2014 and was implementing with high rates. The plant's labour productivity of 22.9 thousand tonnes per person is the highest among its peers in Russia and the CIS.