Have you ever been there? Beautiful mountains, hikes, great kayaking… Vancouver area is a true natural wonder! Still, it was all about castings at the AFS Northwest regional congress last week. In this context, SF happily accepted the invitation and traveled 4,800km to give a lecture on thermal analysis for aluminum, iron and steel foundries and discuss why casting simulation goes hand-in-hand with thermal analysis for more profits.
Because as you know in 2016, it’s not just about the aerospace and automotive ones : more and more small jobbing foundries for all alloys are using these two complementary technologies (computer simulation and thermal analysis) to make more money out of their melt every day. Whether it’s by buying/renting the softwares or by paying for à la carte services, foundries enjoy great return on investment.
Figure 1 : Yohan Tremblay explaining with style how thermal analysis and calculus are a cost-effective quality control tool at the AFSbc.ca congress.
Download AFSbc Thermal Analysis PowerPoint by SF :
Click here to download the full PowerPoint on thermal analysis advances which SF presented at AFSbc. Here’s one example among many others of how more and more aluminum, steel and iron foundries use thermal analysis for a cost-effective melt. In fact it’s useful for any metal :
- Operator takes a sample of the melt and pour it into a cup having a thermo-couple inside in order to measure the cooling curve;
- MeltLab measures phase transformation energy of all phases ( endothermic or exothermic ) in the melt during solidification using calculus on the cooling curve;
- MeltLab is programmed to correlate phase transformation energy with your microstructures or specific metallurgical quality needs ;
- You tell MeltLab to display go / no-go quality controls for the operator on a user-friendly screen, like 42 inches, telling him what and how much to add to the melt.
- Result is a melt with stable metallurgical quality. By measuring what you do you can control it. In other words, you obtain castings with a more consistent quality with reduced scrap hence, you make more profit.
You’ll find several practical examples in the Powerpoint ( download here ).
Using Thermal Analysis with Casting Simulation :
While foundries use thermal analysis to help control metallurgical quality, foundries use casting simulation softwares to help design castings and filling system geometries in harmony with the physics of casting metallurgy, like solidification properties of alloys. At least, that’s how SF work to bring more value to its customers.
For example, how do you make sure the alloy properties you simulated your casting with are in the range of the alloy you actually pour into your molds? Taking into account the work has been done to control other casting process variables, here’s what SF train customers to typically do for a stable melt and efficient casting design:
- Simulate naked casting designs with SOLIDCast to know how the part needs to be filled by gating and fed by risers with metal. Can we modify the part so it’s more casting-friendly ?
- Design according to the best principles ( avoid turbulence, see John Campbell’s work );
- Use FLOWCast and OPTICast to confirm and optimize designs and casting yield% for more profit per casting ;
- Program MeltLab for go/ no-go quality controls in the furnace live on the melt deck, all done by the operator;
- Operator correct the melt according to what he sees on the MeltLab screen, if necessary, in order to be in the desired metallurgical quality range ;
- Pour consistent castings.
Questions ? We’re happy to meet and discuss with foundries across the world ! SF now works with metalcasters in India, Canada and USA. And we’re growing !
Here are the next articles you’ll read during fall 2016 on SF blog :
- More than 1800 downloads and 200 returning users per week of the free SF app at www.castingdefect.com;
- SF co-founder wins MetSoc Emerging Professional 2-years grant;
- SF wins grant for R&D project on aluminum casting porosity ( oxides and hydrogen) control tool;
- The new MeltCup for iron and stand for aluminum thermal analysis;
- New SF service offer for casting buyers and machine designers;
- Three upcoming trainings on sand molding : no-bake, cores and green-sand;
- Upcoming training on SOLIDCast, OPTICast and FLOWCast in Québec;
Let’s keep on casting !