Iron and Steel Industry in India

The opening of the Tata Iron and Steel Industry (Company) in Jamshedpur in 1907 was an important event in the history of industrialization in India. At present, India is the fifth-largest producer of crude steel in the world.

Raw Materials

Iron ore, manganese, limestone, silica, feldspar, scrap iron, and flux are important raw materials used in the iron and steel industry. Coking coal for the industry is obtained from Jharia, Raniganj, Bokaro, Giridha, and Korba. Manganese is used for hardening the steel and for removing impurities.

Steel Making

Iron ore exists with impurities such as sulphur, silica, and lime. These impurities have to be removed to obtain pure iron for manufacturing steel. The following process is used for converting iron ore to steel.


Ore Reduction

  • The process of ore reduction is carried out in the blast furnace. Coke, limestone and dolomite are added to combine impurities in the ore.
  • These impurities combine to form slag which floats on the molten iron and can be separated from it.
  • Molten iron is then collected at the base of the furnace which is removed at regular intervals.
  • This product is known as pig iron which can later be converted to wrought iron, steel and cast iron.

Steel Melting Furnace

  • To convert pig iron into steel, impurities are removed by deoxidation.
  • Hardening material such as carbon is then added.

Rolling Mills

  • The steel is cast into ingots and rolled into different sizes.

Tata Iron and Steel Plant at Jamshedpur

Tata Iron and Steel Company (TISCO) is located at Jamshedpur about 240 km northwest of Kolkata.

Availability of Raw Materials

  • The plant gets iron ore from the Gurumahisani mines in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha and from the Noamundi mines in Singbhum district of Jharkhand.
  • The plant obtains manganese from Joda in Keonjhar district and limestone, dolomite and fire clay from the Sundargarh district of Odisha.
  • Coal is received from Jharia and Bokaro coalfields which are located at a distance of about 177 km.

Power Supply: Coal, the main source of power supply, comes from Jharia and Bokaro coalfields.

Water Supply: Water from the rivers Kharkai and Subarnarekha is used in the plant.

Labour Force: Most labour force comes from the densely populated states of Bihar, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, and Uttar Pradesh.

Markets: Kolkata is an important market for finished steel.

Transport Facilities: Jamshedpur is well-connected with roads and railways to the other parts of the country. It is connected with Eastern Railways and Kolkata Port for exporting steel.

Products: High-grade carbon steel and acid steel are used for making railway wheels, axles, bars, and rods. The plant also produces special alloy steel.


Other Large Iron and Steel Plants


Bokaro Steel Plant

Bokaro Steel Plant was set up in assistance with Russia.

Location: Hazaribagh District

Availability of Raw Materials:

  • Coal: Bokaro and Jharia,
  • Iron ore: Kiriburu mines in Keonjhar (Odisha)
  • Limestone: Bhavantapura
  • Dolomite: Palamau district of Jharkhand

Power Supply: Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC)

Water Supply: Reservoirs across River Damodar

Products: Pig iron, crude steel, and saleable steel. Its sludge and slag are used for making fertilizers at Sindri.


Durgapur Steel Plant

Durgapur Steel Plant was set up in assistance with the UK.

Location: Burdwan district of West Bengal

Availability of Raw Materials: Iron ore: Singhbhum (Jharkhand) and Keonjhar (Odisha), Coal: Jharia (Jharkhand) and Raniganj (West Bengal)

Power Supply: Coal for power supply is obtained from Jharia coalfields and Damodar Valley Corporation

Water Supply: River Damodar

Products: Alloy steel and railway items such as wheels. Also produces crude coal tar and crude benzol.


Bhilai Iron and Steel Plant

Bhilai Iron and Steel Plant set up in assistance with Russia

Location: Durg district of Chhattisgarh

Availability of Raw Materials:

  • Iron ore: Dalli Rajhara mines (Chhattisgarh)
  • Limestone: Nandini
  • Manganese: Balaghat mines in Madhya Pradesh

Power Supply: Coal is obtained from Bokaro, Karagati, and Jharia coalfields in Jharkhand and Korba in Chhattisgarh

Water Supply: Reservoir located at Tendula

Products: Heavy rails, billets, rolled wires, structural beams, and plates for the shipbuilding industry. It also produces by-products such as ammonium sulphate, benzol, coal tar, and sulphate acid.


Rourkela Steel Plant

Location: Sundargarh district of Odisha

Availability of Raw Materials:

  • Iron ore: Sundargarh and Keonjhar (Odisha)
  • Manganese: Barajmda
  • Limestone: Bhirmitrapur
  • Dolomite: Baradwar

Power Supply: Coal is obtained from Jharia, Talcher, and Korba fields. Electricity is obtained from Hirakud Project.

Water Supply: Mandira dam across River Sankha and River Mahanadi

Products: Hot-rolled sheets, galvanized sheets, and electrical steel plates. Also produces nitrogen which is used as fertilizer.


Iron and Steel Industry in India

Also, Read Manufacturing Industries in India-Agro Based