Ukrainian industrial company Interpipe has invested USD 16.2 million to develop its railway product manufacturing facilities. The list of major objectives of the investment program includes the expansion of the capacities in finish machining of railway wheels, mastering of manufacturing of complex products with new finishing operations, and on-site assembling of wheelsets.
This modernization will enable the company to boost its export volumes and enter new market segments, namely wheels for high-speed rail and wheelsets for freight wagons.
The new line for finishing operations is intended for precision machining of the wheel bore and various types of web drilling. Previously the company has ordered such services from European subcontractors.
New capacities for finish machining of railway wheels allow the company to increase wheel production volumes for export markets from 33,000 to 49,000 tons a year. The new production site for it will carry out wheel turning, quality control, and marking operations. This primarily concerned the American and Middle Eastern markets. The new site has been designed in line with the requirements of the Association of American Railroads (AAR).
The company also launches new production facility for finish-machined axles and wheelsets for freight transport. Production capacity ensures manufacturing of 10,000 axles and wheelsets annually. Interpipe started to master the new product two years ago. At that time the company’s engineering team developed a production technology of rough-machined railway axles, using equipment available at corporate facilities without requiring any additional investment. The second stage has consisted of the mastering of production of finish-machined railway axles and wheelsets assembling.
The newly launched capacities will enable partial in-house assembly of wheelsets in Ukraine. Along with it company will continue to assemble wheelsets in cooperation with European subcontractors.
“Now Interpipe had all the major components for railway wheelset production, including high-quality axle billets, manufactured at Interpipe Steel, and the understanding of customers’ needs. Interpipe’s R&D team has effectively taken advantage of these benefits to create a fully new product. All European wheel companies follow the way of self-maintained wheelsets assembling. We have become the first CIS manufacturer that will be able to offer such a solution to its customers”.
Europe and America are the principal markets for the new wheels, railway axles, and wheelsets. The newly developed products have already certified for compliance under main international standards.
The new production facilities are located at the Interpipe NTRP mill in Dnipro city. The launch of the new equipment will ensure the creation of 335 new jobs.