CZ/SK verze

ZSSK CARGO Transforms Slag into a Valuable Resource for Industry

ZSSK CARGO Transforms Slag into a Valuable Resource for Industry
photo: gsl_bahnmotive / Flickr/DB Cargo_294 616-8_Mannheim
26 / 01 / 2024

Carrying slag with freight carriers means having a regular flow of raw materials. For ZSSK CARGO, this means transporting more than 350 thousand tonnes of goods per year.

Almost every industry produces waste, and the metallurgical industry is no exception. The smelting of liquid metals produces slag as a "by-product". Slag is a feedstock for the production of thermal, acoustic, and fire insulation materials for the construction industry. And how is it processed? By crushing into gravel, but it can also be granulated. Slag wool is obtained by blowing molten slag through steam.

The Košice steelworks produce more than half a million tonnes of this raw material every year. The largest consumers of slag in Slovakia are cement works. And, who really appreciates stability, strength, ecological harmlessness, and environmental friendliness? Producers of artificial aggregates. Slag is most often transported in high-walled wagons of the Falls and Falns type. One wagon can hold more than 50 tons of cargo. These wagons have pneumatically operated side discharge flaps. This is particularly advantageous for fast and efficient unloading of own-weight loads at the end customer's site.

ZSSK CARGO deals with slag almost every day. The national carrier regularly transports 30 thousand tonnes of slag by rail from Haniska near Košice. As the only Slovak network-wide rail freight carrier, it can also provide circular utilization of raw materials.

gsl_bahnmotive / Flickr

Slag is transported regularly to four customers

Complete freight trains from Košice, via the Štrbská ramp to Žilina, where two electric locomotives transport the cargo to Trenčianská Teplá, are directed to the cement producer in Horní Srní in the Považie region. There, the set is divided into smaller handling trains to transport the freight to the destination station Horné Srnie.

The second customer is the cement works in Ladce. This is an unoccupied tariff point and therefore these electric locomotives are shut down with a set loaded with slag to the transfer point. A handling train is used at the station to unload the wagons and prepare the empty wagons for transport back to Ladce or Púchov.

The longest route is from the east to the far Záhorie region. The locomotives alternate between direct and alternating voltage. Within the route, 363 series locomotives are also involved. Thanks to this, a completely electrically powered train arrives as far as Zohor station, 500 km away. In the last kilometers, the traction changes to diesel. The fourth and also the last carriage measures only 30 kilometers. All the way, the carriages are led by a diesel locomotive. In Turňa nad Bodvou, the raw materials are taken over by the customer's shunting locomotive.