In many cases the origin of a rolling mill can be found in the need of making a series of profiles, although this initial approach tends to evolve subsequently by the desire to address the rolling of new shapes, to ease production from continuous casting sections, for needs to reduce yield and energy, reduce waste, or countless other reasons..
A single mill can be very suitable for rolling different sections, however, will depend on the initial sections that are accessible or available capacity of the cylinders, the powers of motors, the length of the finished product, cooling capacity, and many more. The initial section is characterized by a geometric shape and metallurgical structure conditions that are usually maintained in time if the conditions of continuous casting process do not change much. To have the availability of initial sections with initiated channel, let's say either dog bone, beam blank or near net shape is a clear advantage in terms of reducing the number and type of rolling operations and even other parameters like reduction or energy consumption, but this requires to look after process conditions more strictly and more vigilant.
In our history we have consistently found that most producers want to roll larger sections and higher weight per unit length, except in the case of Asian countries where there is still a long journey to go in construction practices and design replacing inclined wing profiles IPN type or S for flat wing profiles IPE or HE (WFB). Behind this strategy, we can identify reasons of steady increase productivity, reduce energy consumption in most cases, greater access to the market by increasing supply or product mix, as well as other reasons.
Most of the time each rolling mill knows which shape is the most profitable, the one with the highest productivity, the one with the highest quality, the one with less problems risk, etc, but in many projects, nearly all of them, often appear to have serious uncertainty issues, for example, if the grooves filling will be suitable, if there's sufficient cooling capacity without presenting straightening problems, and other important issues which determine the degree of success.
Another important factors, moreover already commented initial sections, are the satnds parameters in terms of available electromechanical power and in terms of guiding capacity. It all defines a geometrical environment and global downgauge capacity, that can offer some posibilities to roll shapes not considered till now, or that with a lot or a few modifications could be manufactured. Process conditions sometimes determine theproduct mix limits, and its modification can open the product mix scope quite a lot.
ATEC+ID can develop the technical studies in terms of tech-productive capacity of rolling mills and the roll pass designs to address an increased product mix, in any sense. We can lso analize other aspects or aftermath that these changes can have in other production and also strategic aspects.