product stewardship innovation round


Our robust R&D process identifies projects, goals, benchmarks, schedules and commercial strategies. This includes tracking new manufacturing techniques and technologies in the market, enabling us to stay ahead of the competition and better serve our customers. Our sales, operations and technical teams are always searching for sustainable innovations that help address society’s greatest challenges and make our customers’ job easier. We collaborate between our U.S. and Poland teams to research upcoming innovative technologies to upgrade our operations more efficiently and sustainably. We also depend on data analytics and our massive databases of operational data around the world to measure and track our performance to identify areas for improvement. Last year, we launched a National Sales, Inventory & Operations Planning (SIOP) process and began work optimizing our network of mills to reduce transportation miles driven and better serve our customers. We also regularly update our operating plan to meet evolving customer needs with innovations introduced and implemented across the business in a timely manner. In 2021, we continued to implement our SIOP program, and we are starting to see the benefits of optimizing our mill networks. When our newest micro mill comes online in 2023, we expect a material reduction in miles per ton shipped.

Implementing successful new processes and innovations involves technological breakthrough and commercialization. Our R&D process involves understanding customer needs, forward market trends and potential new product demand. We learn about opportunities from our people at every level of our organization. At CMC, we have an open-door culture and encourage our stakeholders to elevate innovative ideas. We believe all research is valuable and we archive any innovative initiatives for a future application that may influence new projects and industry demands. However, not all innovative ideas are successful. Despite our rigorous planning and data modeling, some projects just don’t provide the return we require. We evaluate new projects monthly or quarterly, depending on their scale, and we accept that part of innovation is knowing that not all good ideas are right for us and our customers.

CMC has a positive track record of developing and acquiring new and innovative products that offer viable solutions to our customers. We are the only U.S. producer of cryogenic rebar, used primarily in the construction of liquefied natural gas storage tanks.

cryo steel product
RebarZero Logo_Horz_rgb

In August 2022, CMC launched RebarZeroTM, a line of products that provides customers with a carbon-neutral option. The carbon-neutral profile provided by RebarZeroTM extends from production to final delivery at the job site, covering Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.

Here’s how it works: CMC already produces steel with a GHG intensity that is 65% lower than the industry average. Once renewable energy credits and carbon offset credits are factored in, RebarZeroTM is effectively carbon neutral.

CMC’s new offering is also available in merchant bar, wire rod and T-post offerings and supports our commitment to helping customers in construction and industrial markets reach their own sustainability goals by offering a line of steel products with one of the lowest GHG emissions in the marketplace.

Constantly Innovating: CMC Micro Mills

At CMC, we are constantly innovating the technologies we use to improve operational and environmental efficiencies. Nowhere is this more apparent than the launch of our micro mills.

In 2009, CMC became the first company in the world to successfully build and operate a micro mill, which connects the melt shop and rolling mill into one continuous process and eliminates the need for consuming natural gas in a reheat furnace. Today, we operate three micro mills. The latest, AZ2, began commissioning in Spring 2023 in Mesa, Arizona.

With AZ2, we took our innovations a step further by incorporating advanced Q-One technology for both the ladle and EAF furnaces, making it the first micro mill in North America capable of sourcing electricity directly from renewable energy resources such as solar and wind.

Q-One technology delivers major benefits. It reduces electricity transmission losses up to 10%, which improves efficiency in our use of generated electricity. We continue to see reduced energy consumption, excellent power factors and reduced electrode consumption.

AZ2 is the first micro mill in the world capable of producing both rebar and MBQ products.