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Duplex breakthrough in wine storage tanks

6月 03, 2013    
 

​The wine-tank park of Garcia Carrión in southern Spain will be home to cutting-edge tanks, built with Outokumpu’s Duplex stainless steels LDX 2101® and 2304 by a leading Spanish stainless tank fabricator, Martinez Sole y Cia.

Modern wine making and stainless steel go hand in hand: today stainless is practically the exclusive tank and piping material from fermentation to the storage of table wine.However, the well-established partnership between wine and stainless is going through some ground-breaking changes in terms of stainlessgrades.

Two austenitic grades have dominated in wine storage tanks: EN 1.4301 (ASTM 304), and 1.4404 (316L) in the uppermost section and roof. The more corrosion resistant 1.4404 is used to prevent pitting corrosion at tank tops caused by sulfides, which are added to tanks to prevent conversion of wine to acid. The two austenitic grades are used cold rolled, with smooth 2B surface to allow easy washing, and hot rolled with 1D surface where higher strength for structural purposes isneeded.

In 2006, wine producer Garcia Carrión, the self-proclaimed leader in the Spanish wine market and an exporter, joined forces with one of Spain’s leading tank fabricators, Martinez Sole y Cia, to build 66 new storage tanks at the Garcia Carrión production facility in Daimiel, southern Spain.

The traditional stainless combination 1.4301/1.4404 presented a challenge: soaring nickel prices put the price of new tanks very high. Outokumpu has for years been supplying Spain’s tank makers with stainless steel products that enable cutting-edge product engineering, specifically 2-meter-wide coil and Duplex grades. Outokumpu’s Spanish sales and technical team explained to Martinez Sole how Outokumpu’s Duplex grades, both the proprietary LDX 2101® and 2304, could provide a solution: the low nickel content of these grades, 1.5% and 4.8% respectively, would bring major cost savings while providing equal or better corrosion resistance than 1.4301 and 1.4404. Additional savings would come from the high strength of all Duplex grades, which allows for thinner gauges. As a result, Martinez Sole could use thinner, either hot or cold rolled coil instead of thicker hot rolled material.

Convinced, Martinez Sole is building the world’s first wine storage tanks for Garcia Carrión using Duplex stainless steel: LDX 2101® and 2304 are used to build the roof and uppermost level of all new tanks. In addition to all Duplex, 520 tons, Outokumpu is supplying all austenitic stainless steel for the project.