Heavy Machine Building

Heavy Machine Building

 

the subsectors of the machine-building industry with enterprises producing equipment for metallurgy, mining, large-scale forge and press operations, crushing, and hoisting and conveying; other products include large excavators, rotary coal complexes, diesel locomotives, railroad cars, and diesel engines. Heavy machine building is the cornerstone of heavy industry and construction. Many heavy machine-building plants include large shops as well as facilities producing semifinished parts for large castings, forgings and metal structures. Machine assembly shops for machining parts and assembling large machines are equipped with special machine tools and large-capacity bridge cranes. Heavy machine-building plants usually produce a variety of products; many engage in individual and small-lot production.

Heavy machine building was poorly developed in prerevolutionary Russia, with only a few plants engaged in that type of production, such as the Izhora, Kramatorsk (now Starokramatorsk), Sormovo, Kolomna, Kharkov, Putilov (now Kirov), and Briansk plants. Heavy machine building began developing in the USSR during the period of reconstruction. The production of metallurgical, transportation, coal, and mining equipment developed rapidly during the first five-year plans (1929–40). Many machine-building plants were converted to heavy machine building, new plants were built, and old facilities were modernized. Within a short time this eliminated the necessity of importing many types of equipment from capitalist countries.

Heavy machine building supplies the USSR national economy with needed heavy machinery and equipment; it also exports a significant portion of its output.

Table 4. Production of the principal types of heavy industrial output in selected socialist countries (1975)
 BulgariaCzechoslovakiaGerman Democratic RepublicHungaryPolandRumaniaYugoslavia
Electric power (billion kilowatt-hours). . . . . . . . . . . . .25.259.284.520.597.153.740.0
Salable coal (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .27.8114.424724.921127.135.5
Pig iron (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .1.69.32.52.27.86.62.0
Steel (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .2.314.36.53.715.09.52.9
Mineral fertilizers (converted to 100-percent nutrients, million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .0.61.04.00.62.61.70.4
Metal-cutting machine tools (thousands). . . . . . . . . . . . .16.329.719.712.531.328.313.3 1
Table 5. Production of the principal types of heavy industrial output in the leading capitalist countries (1975)
 USAGreat BritainFranceFederal Republic of GermanyJapanItaly
1 1974
2 1972
Electric power (billion kilowatt-hours). . . . . . . . . . . . .2,100282186286460146
Petroleum and gas condensate (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4121.11.05.70.61.0
Natural gas (billion cu m). . . . . . . . . . . . .55533.210.221.02.813.8
Salable coal (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .58512825.521619.11.3
Pig iron (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .7412.017.930.186.611.4
Steel (million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .10920.021.540.410221.9
Mineral fertilizers (converted to 100-percent nutrients, million tons). . . . . . . . . . . . .16.81.35.55.13.11.7
Metal-cutting machine tools (thousands). . . . . . . . . . . . .1285542714516966 2

Metallurgical equipment. Metallurgical machine building developed rapidly alongside the metallurgy industry in the USSR during the first five-year plans. The Irkutsk Heavy Machine-building Plant was built in the years 1929–32, and in 1933 and 1934 two other major plants were launched—the S. Ordzhonikidze Ural-mash Plant in Sverdlovsk and the Novokramatorsk Machine-building Plant in Kramatorsk. As new plants were being built, existing enterprises were modernized, technical services were established, and workers were trained. By the beginning of the Great Patriotic War of 1941–45, the USSR had large-scale capacities for the production of metallurgical equipment.

The Southern Urals Machine-building Plant, the Elektrostal’ Plant, and the Alma-Ata Plant were all constructed during the war. Postwar production was expanded with the building of the Zhdanov and Buzuluk plants, among many others. These plants manufacture modern equipment for blast furnaces with working volumes of 3,200 and 5,000 cu m and a productivity of 4 million tons per year; oxygen converters with capacities of 300–350 tons; roasters for the production of iron ore pellets, with a sintering surface of 520 sq m and a productivity of 3.6 million tons per year; curved, continuous-operation steel-casting machines to produce cast slabs, with a productivity of 1 million tons per year; equipment for multiple cokers with a productivity of 1 million tons per year and equipment for the vacuum casting of steel; highly mechanized and automated rolling mills, including the model 1300 blooming mill, wide-band sheet mills with a productivity of 6 million tons per year, rolling mills for cold rolling various types of sheet and pipe, and pipe-welding and pipe-rolling mills; and section-bending units.

Data on the production of metallurgical equipment are given in Table 1.

Mining machinery. Before the October Revolution of 1917 there were no specialized machine-building enterprises in Russia producing mining equipment: such equipment was imported from abroad. During the first years of Soviet power mining equipment continued to be imported. The Kyshtym Machine Plant was organized in 1930 from existing machine workshops, as was the Krivoi Rog Kommunist Plant in 1937; both plants manufactured and repaired mining machinery. Mining equipment was later produced at the Leningrad Pnevmatika Plant in Leningrad and the Konotop Machine-building Plant. During the Great Patriotic War of 1941–45, the fascist Geman forces greatly damaged the USSR’s mining equipment production facilities. Some plants were moved to the eastern regions of the country, where a new center of mining machine building developed.

In 1975 the country had more than 20 plants producing mining equipment, the largest being the Iasnogorsk, Donetsk, Voroshilovgrad, Iasinovataia, and Voronezh machine-building plants. Equipment manufactured includes rotary excavators with spoil dumpers, having a productivity of up to 1,250 cu m per hour or up to 5,000 cu m an hour (the latter are produced at the plants of other industries); cutter-loaders and entry-driving combines; mine ventilation fans; surface mechanization equipment; ore-dressing equipment; drilling rigs; shields; shaft and mine winches; and drill bits.

Coal-mining machinery. The manufacture of equipment for coal mining in the USSR began in 1924 when the Donugol’ Trust formed an administrative board for its subsidiary enterprises and then built a series of plants. The production of centrifugal pumps, mine cars, scraper hoists, and conveyors began in 1924 and 1925. Subsequent production included coal-cutting machines, shaft hoists and winches, storage batteries, and electric locomotives. During the years 1941–45 a center of coal machine building was set up in the eastern part of the country. The largest plants producing coal-mining equipment today are the Druzhkovka, Gor-lovka, and Kopeisk plants.

Coal machine-building enterprises manufacture equipment to mechanize and automate the basic processes of underground coal mining, including cutter-loaders and coal plow units, coal complexes and powered mine supports for stoping, and entry-driving machines, as well as equipment for hydraulic excavation, the sinking of mine shafts, the loading and transporting of rock and coal within mines, ore-dressing operations, water removal, ventilation, and mine illumination.

The production of coal and mining equipment is shown in Table 2.

Hoisting and conveying machines. Hoisting and conveying equipment in prerevolutionary Russia was supplied primarily by foreign companies. After the October Revolution production was organized at several plants in different branches of industry. By 1940, production had reached a relatively high level, but it was still scattered over many sectors of industry. After 1940 the share of hoisting and conveying equipment produced at specialized plants increased. The largest plants today are the Uzlovaia Machine-building Plant, the Sibtiazhmash Plant in Krasnoiarsk, the Leningrad Plant for Hoisting and Conveying Machines, and the Khar’kov Plant for Hoisting and Conveying Machines.

Enterprises in this sector produce cranes of all types, conveyors (belt, pushing, and shaking types), stacking cranes, escalators, and loaders. Equipment for continuous conveying and floor-mounted conveying equipment have also been developed and put in production (see Table 3).

Diesel engines. Diesel engines find general industrial application in ships, diesel locomotives, stationary and mobile power plants, drilling rigs, road and construction machinery, and large trucks. Diesel building in Russia began in the late 19th century.

Table 1. Production of metallurgical equipment in the USSR (thousand tons)
 19401950196019701975
Equipment for blast-furnace operations and steel smelting, rolling coking, sintering, and continuous steel casting. . . . . . . . . . . . .29.7131.2222.0280.6312.9
For rolling. . . . . . . . . . . . .10.266.1120.6140.1132.1
Table 2. Production of coal- and ore-mining equipment in the USSR
 1940196019701975
Coal complexes and powered mine supports:    
units. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .97289504
running meters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8,00037,90068,250
Cutter-loaders. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .188851,1721,263
Entry-driving machines. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .171327510
Mine hoists. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .100264183263

Original Russian diesel designs for stationary and marine engines were created, and by 1914 the total annual output of diesel engines in the country was equal to 122,000 hp. Diesel building developed rapidly after the October Revolution. A research laboratory was established in 1924 and later converted into the Central Scientific Research Diesel Institute. Work was carried out to establish a more efficient product line and to build new types of dieseis, including the first engines for diesel locomotives. By 1940, there were 19 types of dieseis in production; of these, 14 were new designs, including lightweight, high-speed engines with outputs up to 1,000 hp and marine engines rated at up to 4,000 hp (1 hp = 0.736 kilowatt).

Table 3. Production of hoisting and conveying machines in the USSR
 19701975
Electric bridge cranes. . . . . . . . . . . . .5,7376,494
Fixed gantry cranes. . . . . . . . . . . . .1,4722,312
Rotary gantry cranes. . . . . . . . . . . . .106102
Metallurgical cranes. . . . . . . . . . . . .3454
Fixed belt conveyors. . . . . . . . . . . . .10,63013,043
Suspension pushing conveyors with automated cargo routing (km). . . . . . . . . . . . .5091.3
Load-carrying conveyors. . . . . . . . . . . . .8202,023

During the Great Patriotic War, tank dieseis were first built at the Transmash Plant in Barnaul and the Urals Turbine and Motor Plant. In the 1950’s and 1960’s production was organized for a series of powerful new dieseis for ships, locomotives, drilling rigs, and mobile power plants. Projects were carried out to improve the reliability, service life, and economy of dieseis and to build fully automated diesel engines and installations. In 1975 the sector was producing 25 types of dieseis, gasoline engines, and gasoline-powered compressors in more than 400 variants, with power ratings from 4 to 21,000 hp. The largest diesel-building plants are the Briansk Machine-building Plant, the Kolomna V. V. Kuibyshev Plant, the V. I. Lenin Transmash Plant in Barnaul, the K. E. Voroshilov Zvezda Plant in Leningrad, the Dvigatel’ Revo-liutsii Plant in Gorky, and the Tokmak S. M. Kirov Plant.

Data on diesel production are given in Table 4.

Heavy machine building has also attained a high level of development in the other socialist countries. In Czechoslovakia the sector produces modern rolling mills, diesel locomotives and engines, and rotary and general-purpose excavators. The German Democratic Republic produces high-grade rolling mills, cranes, diesel engines, and rotary excavators. Poland produces marine dieseis and cranes, and Hungary wire-drawing mills and diesel engines. Rumania produces rolling equipment and dieseis, and Bulgaria hoisting and conveying machines.

Among the capitalist countries with high outputs of heavy machinery are the USA, the Federal Republic of Germany, Japan, Great Britain, France, and Italy.

REFERENCES

See references under MACHINE BUILDING.

I. S. REVES and E. S. MATVEEV (section on diesel engines)

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