Taiyuan Iron and Steel Co (TISCO) has set a new record thanks to its production of the world's largest and heaviest weld-less integral stainless steel ring forging, a key component for fast-neutron reactors, on March 12.

The ring forging will be adapted so that it can be used as a component in China's first fourth-generation nuclear power unit –– the 600 MW fast-neutron reactor in Xiapu county, northeast of Fujian province. 

Working with China Institute of Atomic Energy and the Institute of Metal Research at Chinese Academy of Sciences, TISCO developed the steel ring forging after tackling defects found in the past smelting and continuous casting process of giant forgings –– which would pose a potential danger to nuclear power units.

As a support for the whole reactor, the giant ring forging is 15.6 meters in diameter and 150 tons in weight; it can bear a load of 7,000 tons and withstand temperatures of up to 650 Celsius. And it is designed to have an operational life of 40 years. 

The new ring forging means that TISCO is the only stainless steel manufacturer in China that can meet all the technical requirements of the fast-neutron reactor.