SSAB has selected Mobile, Ala., as the site for a new state-of-the-art heat-treating facility. The investment, part of a program the company announced in August, will increase the existing facility’s annual quenched and tempered (Q&T) steel capacity from 100,000 to 400,000 metric tons. The $460 million investment comprises a new quenching line, advanced finishing facilities, control and roll shifting technology for the rolling mill and a vacuum tank degasser. The facility will produce Q&T steel plate for where properties such as strength, hardness and toughness are required beyond those available in commercial grades.

Construction of the new facility is scheduled to commence in 2009, with production to begin in 2011. Mobile was chosen over SSAB’s Montpelier, Iowa, plate mill. The current investment and other upgrades follow the company’s announcement in April that it would increase its steel plate heat-treating capacity in the United States.