The American Council of Engineering Companies of Ohio awarded R.E. Warner & Associates, Inc. an “Engineering Excellence Honor Award” for the design of an emergency system to supply critical cooling water to major steel producer’s Hot Strip Mill Reheat Furnaces during a loss of utility power event.
The importance of the project was dramatized in the 2003 northeastern United States power blackout when the lack of power caused considerable equipment damage and loss of needed production. U.S. Steel wanted to be better prepared for any possible future blackouts. The lack of cooling water causes severe overheating of the furnace’s water cooled steel skid pipes, and damages equipment creating production shut down. The outage and damaged furnace can idle production for several weeks, negativity impact the labor force and ultimately cost U.S. Steel significant dollars to perform repairs and restart production.