Coidan Graphite: Providing Graphite to the Steel Industry Worldwide

Based in Yorkshire, Coidan Graphite is a team of experts in bespoke graphite machining and advice, using their state-of-the-art CNC manufacturing facilities to produce first-class graphite products.  

For more than 15 years, Coidan Graphite has worked with steel works companies such as Liberty Steel, Outokumpu, TATA and British Steel. Founder, David Coidan has personally been supplying the steel sector for more than 40 years.  

The steel works industry is made up of companies who manufacture semi-finished carbon steel from scrap using electric arc furnaces. This process involves scrap being melted down in electric arc furnaces to produce the semi-finished steel. The specialist graphite machinists are responsible for the supply and repair of graphite electrodes to keep the graphite consumption under control. 

Graphite electrodes are a vital part of the steel production process, and since 2004, Coidan Graphite has been providing the highest quality graphite electrodes to be used in electric arc furnaces around the world.  

Steel is made in two ways. The first way is by using a basic oxygen furnace (BOF) AKA blast furnace and the second is by using an electric arc furnace (EAF) – the steelmaking furnace which uses the electrodes Coidan Graphite manufactures and repairs.  

EAFs are used by the steel works industry as they allow steel to be made from a 100% scrap metal feedstock. This greatly reduces the energy required to make steel when compared with primary steelmaking from ores. Another benefit to using an electric arc furnace is flexibility. While blast furnaces cannot vary their production by much and can remain in operation for years, EAFs can be started and stopped quickly, allowing the steel mill to vary production and steel grades according to demand.  

David Coidan explains, “Graphite is the only material used in an EAF. It’s an excellent electrical conductor and can withstand a high current density, which is important as the electric arc temperature reaches around 3000 °C (5000 °F).” Graphite also has a host of other benefits:

  • It has high thermal conductivity which helps to minimise temperature differences
  • It is chemically inert
  • Its melting point is significantly higher than the scrap metal used
  • Low thermal expansion means its strength isn’t reduced at high temperatures

Over the years, the steel industry has changed rapidly, and technology has led to improved efficiencies. As the world of industry and commerce is evolving, the steel sector is evolving with it. Steel is the world’s most important engineering and construction material and touches almost every aspect of our lives – from buildings and bridges to cars, washing machines and surgical equipment. 

In the last 60 years, stronger steels have been developed and yet less energy is being used in the manufacturing process. As a zero-waste manufacturer, this is something which is extremely important to Coidan Graphite. Every scrap of graphite used is either processed or repurposed, all of their packaging is recycled, and for every tonne of graphite sold, Coidan Graphite plants a tree at local schools or wildlife conservation areas.  

Steel will continue to be an integral part of how the world is evolving. Being a modern and environmentally sound material, future skyscrapers and tomorrow’s smart cities will be built on steel and encourage a more sustainable future. As a zero-waste manufacturer, Coidan Graphite is contributing to this better and more eco-friendly future. The steel industry itself is making new steel with 30% recycled product, and at Coidan, the graphite used to create the steel is 100% recycled.  

Coidan Graphite even has its own Green Scheme: Committed to supporting the steel sector in reducing their environmental footprint, the team recover used and damaged electrodes and recondition them into green graphite electrodes. The Green Scheme allows customers to exchange 6 tonnes of used or damaged UHP graphite electrodes and in return, they’ll receive 1 tonne of green graphite electrodes. As well as contributing to saving the environment and reducing waste and landfill, the green graphite electrodes also save customers on cost and deliver a high-quality electrode performance. The energy required to manufacture 1 tonne of green graphite electrodes is less than 2% of the energy required to manufacture a new graphite electrode. 

Coidan Graphite provides vital graphite solutions to the steel works industry worldwide. Working with companies including Liberty Steel, Outokumpu, TATA, ArcelorMittal, Sheffield Forgemasters, British Steel, Corus, Celsa and AMG for 15 years. As well as for use in steel works, Coidan’s graphite products are used in a range of other industries, including military defence, aerospace and manufacturing.