Industrial AI in Metals and Mining

3 Ways that AI is Transforming the Steel Industry

Published on:
July 1, 2019

Buoyed by higher prices and steady demand, the steel industry has shown its grit in the face of strong headwinds that it has experienced in the past five years. Where attention continues to focus on margin control, steel manufacturers are also looking to diversify their production line, reduce their carbon dioxide emissions and improve the quality of their products.

Today AI is helping steel manufacturers to accelerate these business objectives in three key areas:  

Optimizing Assets

Ensuring assets, such as the blast furnace, are operating at the most effective operating range and that you can optimize its uptime. AI is also critical to understanding the health of assets by being able to identify key parameters that signal a maintenance issue is coming up so that your operations teams can prepare for it in order to reduce unplanned downtime.  

Optimizing Processes

Steel production processes, such as the boiler or casting processes, do not run in isolation, instead the same piece of steel will flow through multiple, interconnected assets. Therefore, being able to optimize the process for the best parameters and also understand any quality concerns that you might face before they occur so that you can make the necessary adjustments is where the value of AI comes to the fore.

Optimizing Costs

How steel manufacturers leverage their utilities – i.e. water, air, gas, electricity, steam (WAGES) – and their raw materials, such as iron ore and coke, cost effectively can dramatically reduce their production costs. AI can help to pinpoint the optimal resources required in order to reduce operating costs, improve margins, while maximizing production yield.  

Today, Canvass Analytics is helping steel manufacturers to generate and increase revenue by improving the quality and quantity of the steel they manufacture and optimizing how they manufacture their products. Leveraging Canvass AI, Canvass’s customers in the metals and mining industry understand the factors that play a role in affecting production quantity and quality.

By understanding the factors, they can forecast how much they can produce based on the parameters, the optimal parameters they should be using, and then determine the best way to operate their equipment that optimizes raw material and energy efficiency.

In this blog, we’re just scratching the surface of how AI can transform the metals and mining industry. We see a future where AI will tackle more complex use cases such adjusting your production mix based on demand and inventory and how to better manage inventory of raw materials, Work in Progress and finished goods.