What do you think could be inside this building?

The building in this picture I am about to mention is actually to do with a steel making plant: http://www.flickr.com/photos/40848766@N06/9138003799/in/photolist-eVuEaD-bgmWCk-fagwft-f6cCTp-eY4fC6-eYfCKA-eYfCmJ-eY4eNB-eBEciT-etwGGk-enssGw-fCgk23-fug3ek-frzUn6-frzUQ6-fqHMtH-fmtg2P-fmHsJb-fmjuD3-fk1JHj-fjDGLe-fbvfDP-fbveQg-faTu2o-fayhZg-fag2Wn-f27dNX-f23MFt-f2i22A-eZVntj-eYUhkd-eY4f2n-eVJnb8-eRYona-eRTnGL-eRFWTp-eNWV5n-eMcfwF-eLAqvS-eLoWWk-eLjCNw-eHgkkB-eH5f8n-eGcycv-eDAM24-eDGTJN-eCVGH4-eAGTCx-eAM3sw-eACdeA-ezSFAg

I’m talking about the massive brown building with the massive arm coming out of the side of it.

So, if it wasn’t part of a steel making plant, what do you think could be in that building otherwise just by looking at it from the outside?

But it IS a steel making plant. I would guess that the arm loads in scrap metal and that there’s a furnace (or three) in the big brown building.

If I didn’t know that, I’d guess it was for food production just based on the silo sitting next to it. I would assume that’s storing something like corn or potatoes.

Or it’s a coal chute.

Looks like a coal conveyor to me too - I think I see train tracks at the bottom for unloading.

Why do you think it isn’t part of the steel plant?

Bowling balls - thousands of 'em.

Just curious as to why you tend to ask hypothetical questions about buildings?

The storage tank is highly re-inforced - it is probably holding a liquid or something that acts like a liquid (iron pellets?)
The tank is also newer than the rest of the structure (guess). I’m guessing they jused to dump crap into the pond and now have to contain it onsite and have trains (which just may take it to another pond and dump it there) (yes, I AM cynical).

You’re correct about the tank being newer than the rest of the structure.

Scunthorpe, huh? Sorry. Carry on then.

True, but the conveyor is probably just that: a coal conveyor.

It looks like a coal conveyor going into a building which contains some type of blast furnace. That would explain the height of the building, although there aren’t any stack on top of it.

Most of the buildings at steel plants look like this or similar

I’ve done some control systems work in a few different steel mills. The big brown building is probably the blast furnace. Raw materials like iron ore, limestone, coke, and maybe other stuff like chromium, nickel, copper, etc. (there’s a lot of different recipes for stainless steel, for example) are put onto a conveyor in the mix house and will be fed into the top of the blast furnace. Since the big conveyor enters the top of the big brown building, this makes me think that the mix house is on the left (behind the tank?) and the big brown building contains the blast furnace. The heating stacks to create the blast air and maybe scrubbers for the exhaust gases appear to be just to the right of the big brown building.

If they have a continuous cast process, the output from the blast furnace could be fed into a casting machine (behind the brown building maybe?) which would need spray water for cooling. The big tank may be a cold water reservoir. Or it could hold raw materials that get dumped onto the conveyor inside the mix house.