DANBURY, Conn., August 29, 2005 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) today announced that it has signed a licensing agreement with WCI Steel, Inc., an integrated, flat-rolled steel producer, for use of Praxair’s patented CoJet® gas injection system in their basic oxygen furnace.
Located in Northeast Ohio, WCI Steel has two 180-ton vessels that can produce up to two million tons of steel a year in a wide variety of carbon, alloy and high-strength chemistries. The installation of the CoJet gas injection technology is scheduled for first quarter, 2006. According to Mike Jones, Superintendent – Steelmaking and Casting at WCI, "We anticipate great things from CoJet technology, including improved yield, more efficient decarburization and lower steel oxygen levels, all leading to significant operating cost reductions."
Praxair's CoJet gas injection system delivers a laser-like coherent jet of oxygen into the molten steel bath. This coherent jet penetrates more deeply into the bath than a conventional supersonic jet stream, providing a more controlled and intense bath mixing, which can increase productivity and reduce costs at a steel mill. Praxair Metals Technologies Vice President Charlie Messina says, "The CoJet system has been proven to provide integrated steel producers with significant metallurgical benefits and productivity improvements." Praxair's revolutionary gas injection system is fully implemented at the Usiminas melt shops and the Cosipa steel mills in Brazil and at U.S. Steel's Gary Works. Installation on ThyssenKrupp Stahl AG steel mills in Germany is currently underway. With this latest signing, Praxair now has licensing agreements with five customers for the CoJet technology to be used in 12 basic oxygen furnaces.
Based in Warren, Ohio, WCI Steel was formed as an independent steel company in 1988. However, the plant’s steelmaking history dates back to 1912, when the Trumbull Steel Company first began making steel on the current WCI site. The company offers 185 grades of high-quality steel for use by various industries and manufacturers. More information is available at their website, www.wcisteel.com.
Praxair Metals Technologies is the business unit responsible for the development, marketing and licensing of Praxair's technologies for process control software and technical services in energy conservation, product quality and productivity in ferrous and non-ferrous metals customers around the world. For more information, please visit us on the Internet at www.praxair.com/metals.
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2004 sales of $6.6 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric and process gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.
Vice President, Global Communications & Public Relations