NEW YORK Essar Steel Minnesota LLC is in talks to build a direct-reduced iron (DRI) plant as part of a joint venture with several leading U.S. steel producers.
The company updated Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board officials on the project, which has an estimated cost of $1.5 billion, according to local media reports.
The DRI plant will be located at its existing facility in Nashwauk, Minn., which is located next to its iron ore mine. A taconite iron ore mine and processing center also are in development, and the company plans to start production of iron ore pellets by late 2013.
Once production starts, iron ore will be used to feed its DRI plant, and the excess will be transported to sister company Essar Steel Algoma Inc. in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. It will also be sold to other U.S. mills through the spot market and to parent Essar Steels mills in India.
Essar Steel Minnesota declined to comment or provide further details.
A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Steel First.