High demand in China for cold-pilgered seamless tubes

by Hans Diederichs

WEM expands production capacity

Western Energy Material Technologies Co., Ltd. (WEM), based in ShaanXi, China, has placed an order with SMS group (www.sms-group.com) for the supply of a cold pilger mill type KPW 25 LC+. With this new cold pilger mill, WEM will be able to satisfy the high demand for cold-pilgered seamless tubes on the Chinese market.

The SMS scope of supply includes the cold pilger mill and all mechanical, electrical, and utility equipment, e.g. cooling, lubrication and hydraulic systems, as well as accessories such as roll assemblies. In addition, SMS will supply a unit to record production data, as part of the electrical equipment package. ‟With our new cold pilger mill from SMS, we can meet the high demand for premium-quality cold-pilgered tubes in the diameter range from 8 to 30 millimeters, primarily on the Chinese market. This particular process guarantees us a product with close diameter and wall thickness tolerances and good surface condition,” says Wen Huimin, Chief Engineer at Western Energy Material Technologies Co., Ltd. ‟We see a clear and long-term demand for this product in China.”

For WEM, this cold pilger mill is not the first product ordered from SMS. Since 2014, there has been a close cooperation with WEM, who already operates three cold pilger mills and an extrusion press supplied by the German company. With the SMS heavy-metal extrusion press (45 MN), WEM is able to produce zirconium mother tubes with outside diameters from 90 to 275 millimeters, which are reduced to seamless tubes by means of cold pilgering. Final products include fuel element cladding tubes, for example. ‟Since WEM already has wear and spare parts for its existing cold pilger mills on stock, we are planning a reduced spare parts package for the new project. This is where WEM benefits from the compatibility of our equipment over many years,” says Michael Wilms, Vice President Seamless Tube Plants at SMS group.

Commissioning of the new cold pilger mill is scheduled for the second half of 2022.

Source and photo: SMS group

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