Product quality improvement

Product quality is one of the company's strategic competitive advantages. Severstal PJSC nowadays has a comprehensive program for improving the quality management system with clear targets.

Quality of future

Quality of future

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Severstal's KPIs reflect the “external” quality, in particular, the level of meeting the customer expectations in terms of product quality, the level of products sorted by customers (in ppm, i.e. parts per million), the level of losses from consumer complaints.

For “internal” quality, KPIs are used such as: the level of non-conforming products in tons and FTT (first time through). This is an indicator that is a percentage estimate of the volume of products made on the first try, i.e. which did not require additional refinement outside the technological process. To monitor the efficiency of customer problems solving such KPIs are used as a percentage of repeated customer problems and a percentage of problems solved in 90 days. All quality KPIs are reviewed at meetings with the CEO.

To achieve KPIs, Severstal is constantly improving processes in the field of quality control.

  • In the Quality Control Department there is a “technical arbitration” group, the tasks of which are to identify problems with certification and prevent shipment of products of inconsistent quality to customers, as well as examination of deviations in shifts, selective audit and control of finished products.
  • EQC group (end-to-end quality control) was created, which centralized the end-to-end accounting function of current quality, including FTT calculation and tracking, pass-through, fabrication factor.
  • The project for the transition to EDS (electronic digital signature) has been implemented. All quality certificates are signed by EDS and are available to the client in the personal account.

To improve its production processes, Severstal also applies innovative systems for monitoring technology and product quality:

  • Use of the Monocon converter slag cut-off system. This system reduces the amount of slag falling into the steel-ladle at the metal tapping, thereby improving the purity of the steel in terms of non-metallic inclusions.
  • Use of a system to maintain the level of the metal in the mold, which increases the stability of the slab production process and significantly improves product quality.
  • Use of a device for quick change of submerged nozzle.
  • Development of a model that makes it possible to automatically fix the presence of a protective tube when casting steel.
  • Use of automated system for monitoring the quality of the strip surface – Parsitek. The system provides 100% quality control of the surface, significantly increases the speed of response to deviations.

Personnel training is also among the most important factors for successful work on product quality. To assess the main factors affecting quality, which include technology, equipment, personnel, semi-finished products, a tool named “quality variation index” is used. To increase the stability of the process, the Cpk indicator is used - the reproducibility index of the process.

As part of creation of the proactive quality management system, the "Agile in Quality" project is being implemented, which is successfully used in flat steel production shops. In the sheet rolling shop number 2, the specialists of the technical control department use plates for product certification. New Dashboard format is used for automation of quality reports. Before the start of the work shift, employees are tested for knowledge of the rules of certification and defects using specially designed tools. This is mainly used in the production of flat products.

Future developments of Severstal:

  • Introduction of the system of automatic control and prediction of quality Eyeron.
  • Creating models to predict the possibility of defects in production shops and to predict the consumer properties of the finished product.
  • Use of computer simulation to minimize the number of trial rolling on rolling mills
  • Reduction of metal defects using mathematical modeling and data analysis (big data).
  • New measuring tools to control roll profiling, coil quality, sheet form before shipment to the client.
  • Use of new cameras to identify defects in cold-rolled steel.