Nucor Corp. made public their plans to build a $2.7 billion Nucor Steel Plant, which will be their largest construction project ever. The Charlotte-based steel company made the announcement as the prices of steel saw a rebound from the lows during the pandemic in 2020 to a higher margin, which increased profits in the industry.
Nucor Corp. were initially considering three regions for the project’s location which were Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Ohio was finally selected as the development site for the steel plant and the production is expected to begin in 2024. The CEO of Nucor Corp., Leon Topalian hinted that the construction location of the proposed Nucor Steel Plant will be close to the automotive assembly plants in the Midwest and Southeast.
The Nucor Steel Plant will be a 3mn short tons/yr electric arc furnace (EAF) flat-rolled steel mill, which will be aimed at producing hot-rolled sheet products by utilizing features such as downstream processing; a tandem cold mill, with annealing capabilities; and initially two galvanizing lines. The proposed plant upon completion will increase the width of the sheet steel to 84 inches for the hot-roll sheet, while the cold-roll sheet would increase to 76 inches. According to Rex Query, the president of sheet and tubular products at Nucor, this will be a good move for the automotive industry where the demand is high.
The Nucor Steel Plant will also be designed to produce some of the cleanest sheets of steel and net-zero steels for the automotive industry, by using low-carbon production techniques. The final product will be made up of 1.1mn st/yr of galvanized steel, 800,000 st/yr of cold-rolled coil, 750,000 st/yr of hot-rolled coil, and 350,000 st/yr of oiled and pickled steel sheet.
David Joseph of the Nucor Corp. recycling department has been working on minimizing the copper composition in shredded scrap to produce higher quality steel. This could be included in the project.
Leon Topalian, the Nucor chief executive also pointed out that the company aims to increase its steel sales in the automotive industry from the current 1.5 million tons to 3 million tons annually, which is the reason they chose to build their Nucor Steel Plant in the heart of the two largest sheet-consuming markets in the United States.