Improved Ladle Preheating

The ladle of the BOF vessel is preheated, in order not to cause excessive temperature drop when filled with steel. Ladle preheating is estimated to require about 0.02 GJ of energy per ton of steel.  The efficiency of the ladle preheating can be improved by using an efficient burner, properly scheduling the heating times and reducing heating durations, monitoring temperatures, installing hoods to reduce raidative losses, and by using recuperative and oxyfuel burners.  

Japanese flag

 In a Japanese plant significant improvements in ladle heating were realized through the introduction of a new high-speed, on-line heating apparatus and by developing a control system that combined this heating system with the control of blowing in a BOF (Worrell, et. al. 2010. p. 89).

Indian flag In another plant in India, signficant improvements in the ladle preheating energy use was achieved by replacing the hose system for gas delivery into a telescopic pipe system, which increased the gas flow from 375 to 480 Nm3/h and significantly reduced heating times (Novamesh).

There are various other measures that can typically reduce the energy consumption between 25 to 50%.  This option is regarded to have high application potential for China, India and the US. 

Development Status Products

Improved Ladle PreheatingCosts & Benefits

Parent Process: Basic Oxygen Furnace
Energy Savings Potential

Japanese flag For the Japanese case, improved ladle preheating reduced the fuel consumption in the subsequent converter by 16%. 

Indian flag textFor the Indian case, reduced heating duration reduced the gas consumption by 39%. 

CO2 Emission Reduction Potential

Reduction in fuel consumption results in lower emissions.


Indian flag Annual monetary gain has been assessed to be around Rs. 15 million.

Improved Ladle Preheating Publications

Energy Efficiency Improvement and Cost Saving Opportunities for the U.S. Iron and Steel Industry

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) energy guide, Energy Efficiency Improvement and Cost Saving Opportunities for the U.S. Iron and Steel Industry, discusses energy efficiency practices and technologies that can be implemented in iron and steel manufacturing plants. This guide provides current real world examples of iron and steel plants saving energy and reducing cost and carbon dioxide emissions.

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Improved Ladle Preheating Resources