Sheet expansion

Nippon Steel and ArcelorMittal are to expand their jointly owned steel sheet-making plant in New Carlisle, Indiana at a cost of $240m.

The two companies will introduce a second line at the plant to make hot-dip galvanised steel sheets for automobiles, a move that will double the plant’s production capacity in readiness for the planned launches of new US vehicle plants by Toyota and Honda.

The plant’s current annual capacity for galvanised steel sheets stands at 450,000 tons. The second line will add an additional capacity of 480,000 tons.

The new continuous galvanising line will be housed in a new 240,000-square-foot building and will be supplied with cold-rolled coils from ArcelorMittal’s Indiana Harbor and Burns Harbor operations as well as ArcelorMittal and Nippon Steel’s joint venture I/N Tek.

Construction work for the second line is set to begin in December, with operations slated to start in 2010.