HPC4Mfg | Technical Topic and Abstract

Topic:  The virtual blast furnace: an integrated high performance computing modeling, simulation and visualization capability for steel manufacturing

Abstract: The steel industry is the fourth largest energy-consuming industry in the U.S. If coke usage in blast furnaces were optimized such that the average coke rate was reduced from 797 lb/net tonne of hot metal (NTHM) to 604 lb/NTHM, costs could be reduced by $894M/year.  A past success in modeling the blast furnace, using Purdue-developed software funded by the Advanced Manufacturing Office, resulted in $8.5M/year cost avoidance and reduced downtime by 50% through improved natural gas injection.  However, each simulation run took over a month to run on Purdue’s system, and the blast furnace had to be run in three pieces due to the size of the problem.  This project will explore scaling the simulation to the entire blast furnace using LLNL’s supercomputing capabilities and  determining the software architecture needed for the dynamic, complex gas flow, combustion, and chemical reactions in these billion dollar systems, which serve as a foundation for steelmaking in the United States.

Academic Partner: Purdue University Calumet, Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation

National Laboratory: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory