An important instant in the construction work came about at the hot rolling mill in the night from Friday to Saturday. The first hot slab left the pusher furnace and set out into the rolling mill equipped with eleven rolling stands: five are all-purpose stands and six are horizontal four-high rolling units. The rolling rate on the last stand, actually constituting the 6-stand rolling tandem, reaches up to 12 meters per second.
The moments before the hot rolling mill start-up were depicted in this way by Oceľ východu on November 19, 1965. A significant date for rolling-mill operators is November 30, 1965, when the first coil of steel sheet was rolled at the hot strip mill. Slabs were still imported to the steelworks at that time, because it did not yet have a complete metallurgical cycle. This came about later, after finishing the steel plants, and the first ingot was rerolled into a slab on June 30, 1966.
“During the past fifty years we have rolled approximately 146 million tons of hot coils, which ranks us among the important producers of steel material in Europe,” says Hot Rolling Mill Division Director Štefan Novák. “A large part of production is sent on for further processing in the Cold Rolling Mill. Coils also travel as semi-product to our Pipe Welding Shop for production of spirally-welded pipes, or we process them by shearing into plates and by slitting into narrow strips, then the rest is sold to other customers.”
One international priority is connected with the name of the hot rolling mill, too. “The Division can boast that it was the first plant within Central and Eastern Europe to be internationally certified for its quality management system in accordance with the ISO 9001 standard. This happened in October 1992. By virtue of automotive customersֹ’ demands, by 1999 the plant had also established and successfully certified its quality management system in accordance with the Directive VDA 6.1 for automotive industry. The Hot Rolling Mill has got four internationally valid certificates at present, that is for the quality management system according to EN ISO 9001 and ISO/TS 16949, for the environmental management system according to EN ISO 14001, and for the energy management system according to EN ISO 50001. This means high recognition and appreciation of the good work of our whole team, as well as being an intensely motivating element for our activity in the coming period,” observes Š. Novák.