Earlier this year Cerefco completed the commissioning and start-up of an Inductotherm 900kW VIP Power-Trak Li Power and Control System at Viking Foundry, based in Germiston, Gauteng. The system included a one-ton Dura-Line melting furnace.
In its standard configuration, Inductotherm VIP power supply units include an intelligent digital control board with fibre-optic connectors for clear signal processing, a bright LED panel system information display and an integral keypad for control and information display entry. All control board functions can be configured via the keypad.
“The VIP power supply units have one of the fastest melt rates from cold charge to pour, and melt more per kWh and kVA for lower melting costs and greater productivity,” said Grant Estman, Managing Director at Viking Foundry.
Earlier this year Cerefco completed the commissioning and start-up of an Inductotherm 900kW VIP Power-Trak Li Power and Control System at Viking Foundry, based in Germiston, Gauteng. The system included a one-ton Dura-Line melting furnace. Now Viking Foundry has added a two-ton melting furnace to the system
“Induction melting holds many benefits for foundries over the traditional fossil-fuel furnace. Prinicipally, in the ferrous trade, it enables high-alloy irons and steels to be melted quickly and efficiently in small or large batches. Therefore, the degree of control is superior to other melting equipment.”
Modern induction melting improves process and productivity
“Too often manufacturers will implement technology for financial reporting purposes but overlook efficiencies that can generate cash flow and reduce costs on the manufacturing floor. Accurate information that provides a business owner or manager the ability to make immediate decisions about his/her operation resulting in a boost to profitability is crucial during an economic downturn. If revenue is down and the market mood does not permit price increases, then profitability can only be realised by reducing costs. So, you must ask yourself, “What prevents me from 100% efficiency?”
“Coreless-type induction furnaces may be slightly less efficient than core-type channel furnaces but they are often more flexible. It is important to know and understand the difference. Channel furnaces were originally developed to melt brass but now are commonly used for copper, bronzes, zinc, aluminium and iron. Coreless furnaces are commonly used for virtually all metals.”
“A coreless induction furnace operates at low, intermediate and high frequencies – from 60 to 10 000 cycles/second – and is unmatched for flexibility. The coreless furnace can be started cold and usually is poured empty. This greatly simplifies alloy changes and makes it possible to shut down as desired.”
“Linings of coreless furnaces may be as durable as core-type furnace linings in applications where a molten charge is maintained 24 hours a day. Because of alloy changes or analysis control, however, batch melting is the usual practice and the recurring heating and cooling results in less lining life. On the other hand, these linings are considerably less expensive and can be changed quickly.”
Since the installation of the two new Inductotherm furnaces Viking Foundry have increased performance, raised efficiencies and enhanced flexibility to achieve higher power utilisation and lower costs of operation
“There is always an ideal relation between the size of a coreless furnace and its operating frequency. As a rule, a small furnace will yield the best results at high frequencies and a large furnace works best at the lower frequencies. There are optimal frequency ranges that are best suited to certain furnaces that produce good, fast melting with a gentle stirring action. Too high or too low frequencies are accompanied by undesirable side effects.”
“Heat recovery and other supplemental efforts get the attention of foundry owners seeking cost savings and environmental improvements. By examining a typical melt shop and its energy usage we will find that melting represents the highest percentage of energy consumption in the foundry. Melting typically represents over 50% of the overall melt shop energy usage. Therefore, it offers the best opportunity for energy demand and usage cost reduction.”
“But what owners neglect to do is compare the output and energy savings of a modern induction furnace to a ‘trusted, old sole’ in the melt department. For many foundries, the largest energy and resultant cost savings can be realised by replacing their current melting equipment with equipment that is more productive and energy efficient. But whether or not you are ready to make that investment, you should investigate operational changes that may also produce significant cuts in your power use. Many of these can be made at little or no cost.”
“We have now got Cerefco to commission our two-ton Inductotherm furnace and it has been installed next to our one-ton furnace that was installed earlier this year. The melt shop is the largest area of energy consumption in a foundry, so it will offer the best opportunity for energy and demand cost reduction. Optimising melt equipment utilisation will minimise kW and kVA demand and maximise tons poured. Proper maintenance and operation of the melt system will reduce energy usage. New induction melting technology will increase performance, raise efficiency and enhance flexibility to achieve higher power utilisation and lower costs of operation.”
For further details contact Viking Foundry on TEL: 011 873 5093 or visit www.vikingfdy.co.za or Cerefco on TEL: 011 845 3253 or visit www.cerefco.co.za or www.inductotherm.com