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LADLE TREATMENT METHOD FOR CAST IRON – CONFRONTATION OF THE DIFFERENT METHODS
First treatment method used by foundries where the alloy necessary to transform the cast iron needed to be laid at the bottom of the ladle together with the magnesium.
With such process though the cast iron poured from the furnace into the ladle could not be transformed due to the lack of homogeneity of the bath, the approximate quantity of the alloy laid at the bottom of the ladle and finally the dispersion of the fumes generated during treatment that would not get recycled within the ladle.
The evolution of the treatment method, following the sandwich method, would be later on identified in the tundish treatment method. Main differences between these two methods are hereafter reported.
Use of the ladle’s lid in the tundish method. During cast iron treatment, such integration would ensure recovery of magnesium reaction thanks to the pressure generated inside the ladle and to the contact of the magnesium with the metal.
Fumes’ reduction inside the foundry. Fumes generated during treatment time would not get dispersed in the vicinity of the ladle but they would have rather been directed to the foundry aspiration system.
Both treatment methods have high maintenance costs and scarce precision and thus low reproducibility of the treatment processes.
CORED WIRE METHOD
In the last few years the Cored wire treatment method has represented the latest innovation in terms of cast iron treatment processes. Such system distinguishes itself from previous methods because:
It guarantees bath homogeneity. Thanks to the feeding of a cored wire – containing the exact chemical composition – directly inside the ladle, the magnesium reaction happens repeatedly at the bottom of the ladle once ladle has been filled with liquid cast iron.
It ensures control on the alloy quantity inserted in the bath, keeping constant the amount of cored wire injected in the ladle.
It allows to monitor each treatment cycle thanks to an integrated automation – time and injection speed of the cored wire controlled by a dedicated software, storage of preconfigured settings of cored wire specifics and treatment specifics for treatments’ repeatability, storage of all treatment cycles for production traceability
It ensures the minimum impact of the fumes generated during treatment time thanks to a dedicated hood aspiration.
It allows the use over a long period of time of the same treatment ladle as it guarantees again high reproducibility of the treatment processes.
Up to today the Cored wire treatment method represents
the most advanced, inexpensive and ecological system used for nodular cast iron production, compacted graphite iron production as well as
the most complete system used for SPHEROIDIZATION, INOCULATION, PEARLITIZATION treatments.
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