Commercial Metals (CMC) plans to construct the world’s first micro mill that utilizes a continuous production flow system to make merchant bar quality (MBQ) products.
The new mill, which will be constructed in Mesa, Arizona is the company’s third micro mill. CMC noted in a media statement on Thursday that the new plant will optimize costs by replacing more expensive rebar capacity while helping the company with more resources to meet rebar and MBQ demand on the West Coast.
The mini mill will have a minimum capacity of approximately 453592.37mt (500,000 tons) per year, which includes 136077.71mt (150,000 tons) of merchant product. The mill will cost around $300mn and construction is expected to begin after pending permits, regulatory approval, and final negotiations are complete. It is scheduled to begin operations in early 2023.
The company said that the mill’s current location next to its existing Mesa facility will allow CMC to use its current infrastructure and the micro mill experience of its employees. Moreover, the new facility will create around 185 new jobs. Once completely operational, the mill could bring an estimated $500mn to the local community and will add up to 1,000 new jobs to the state when including industry suppliers and area businesses. It is also projected to gradually create $50mn in EBITDA for the recycler.
Barbara R. Smith, chairman of the board, president, and chief executive officer of CMC expressed enthusiasm over the upcoming potential of the new micro mill and said it’s a plan for growth that will support local demand for rebar and merchant bar using eco-friendly methods.
Tracy Porter, executive vice president and chief operating officer, said the new micro mill will use up-to-date electric arc furnace (EAF) technology from Danieli. The method will allow CMC to connect the EAF and ladle furnace directly to renewable energy sources. With this advanced approach, together with the continuous steelmaking process, higher productivity in steel-making is anticipated.