Thermprocess, Newcast, Metec and GIFA 2023 are sure to provide a strong platform for the energy-intensive thermal-processing industry.
May 15, 2023
From June 12-16, the fairgrounds in Düsseldorf, Germany, will become the center for the international casting and metallurgical industries. Trade fairs GIFA, Metec, Thermprocess and Newcast (GMTN) will cover the complete spectrum of foundry technology, castings, metallurgy and thermal-processing technology.
Solar Atmospheres of Western PA recently vacuum degassed 175,000 pounds of 6Al-4V titanium in its 48-foot-long vacuum furnace. The furnace load consisted of 154 sheets of titanium measuring 40 inches wide x 240 inches long. It represented the largest and heaviest single load of titanium ever processed in Solar’s history.
Ipsen completed the installation of a vacuum furnace for Taiwan Hodaka Technology Co. Ltd., an aluminum extrusion supplier specializing in high-end aerospace aluminum alloys. The TurboTreater has a work zone size of 36 inches (914 mm) x 36 inches (914 mm) x 48 inches (1,219 mm) with a weight capacity of 3,000 pounds (1,360 kg) and a normal operating temperature up to 2400°F (1315°C). The furnace was designed with convection heating, which allows for more uniform processing of large cross-section parts and dense loads. It is also capable of quenching at up to 12-bar positive pressure in nitrogen.
Aero Space Power, a European MRO facility, ordered a custom-made vacuum furnace from SECO/WARWICK. The furnace, which has a work area measuring 1,300 x 1,000 x 1,500 mm (51 x 39 x 59 inches), will be used for repair solutions for both complex aircraft engines and gas turbines for the energy industry at a facility in Hungary. It is designed to process work in the presence of two gases: argon (used for partial pressure) and nitrogen (used mainly in the cooling process). The furnace will be equipped with a dew-point sensor for each of the gases. It also includes a partial-pressure control system based on three gases (hydrogen, argon and nitrogen) to help prevent evaporation and sublimation of alloying elements from the load surface during the vacuum heat-treatment process.
According to the Reshoring Initiative’s 2022 data report, reshoring and foreign direct investment (FDI) job announcements in 2022 were at the highest rate ever recorded. There was 364,000 reshoring and FDI jobs announced for 2022, which was up 53% from 2021’s record number. Fourth-quarter announcements accelerated even more than anticipated due to the Chips and Infrastructure Acts and deglobalization trends. In addition, 2022 brought the total number of job announcements since 2010 to nearly 1.6 million.
A U.S.-based international manufacturer of diversified mill products for a range of industries ordered a vertical vacuum furnace from SECO/VACUUM to increase its production capacity and upgrade its productivity. The new furnace will allow the company to heat treat larger parts, at higher quantities per cycle, than its existing furnace – all with improved quality control and reliability. The bottom-loading vacuum furnace with 6-bar nitrogen gas quench is 60 inches in diameter and 72 inches tall with a 3-ton-capacity work zone. This provides enough room to treat three of the company’s largest dies at once compared to only two per cycle with the old furnace.
The former Ipsen Ceramics’ facility in Pecatonica, Ill., is being repurposed for vacuum furnace hot-zone assembly. The plant is currently undergoing major refurbishments, including new lighting, HVAC, roofing, and other interior and exterior upgrades. The factory is less than 30 miles from Ipsen’s Vacuum Technology Excellence Center in Cherry Valley and will initially employ up to eight material assemblers. Incorporating the Pecatonica location into Ipsen’s vacuum furnace production and aftermarket process will provide added benefits to customers. In the future, Ipsen is considering other manufacturing activities in Pecatonica to supplement the needs of the Vacuum Technology Excellence Center.
SECO/WARWICK received an order from a China-based manufacturer of circuit breakers for three vacuum furnaces to be used metal heat treatment. The furnaces ensure a very high vacuum level and temperature uniformity within the entire load. The vacuum level in the furnace is maintained by vacuum pumps. Depending on the application, a single pump or a combination of mechanical, diffusion and/or turbomolecular pumps are used. The turbomolecular pump used in this application features high degassing velocity in the particle flow area and a high compression ratio. It also uses less energy than diffusion pumps.
The Korea Institute of Materials Science (KIMS), a government-funded research institute under the Ministry of Science and ICT, purchased a Nitrex vacuum furnace to bolster its vacuum heat-treating capabilities. KIMS conducts a range of technological research-and-development activities to advance Korea’s scientific and industrial research. The horizontal-type, external-quench vacuum furnace is equipped with a curved molybdenum wide-band heating element arranged in a circular configuration around the main hot zone. This free-floating design ensures optimum temperature uniformity throughout the chamber. Since the heating elements are in free movement during thermal expansion, there are fewer instances of breakage, twisting or premature failures. According to Nitrex, the furnace can heat treat parts at temperatures up to 2500°F (1371°C).
Busch Vacuum Solutions U.S. acquired VESCO-McLaughlin Inc. (VESCO), an industrial service company specializing in the heat-treatment and metallurgy industries. East Windsor, Conn.-based VESCO was formerly part of McLaughlin Furnace Group (MFG), a supplier of engineered vacuum solutions for thermal-processing and surface-preparation applications. MFG’s major customers operate in the aerospace, automotive, defense, energy and semiconductor fabrication industries. The addition of VESCO expands Busch Vacuum Solutions’ business by adding complementary services to its current offering.