Solar Atmospheres of Western PA successfully vacuum heat treated two massive H13 extrusion dies at its facility in Hermitage, Pa. A new 10-bar, 600-HP high-pressure gas-quench vacuum furnace from Solar Manufacturing was able to fully harden the two H13 extrusion dies in successive cycles. The dies, received from two different customers located in Ohio, resulted in an as-quenched hardness of HRC 50-52 using nitrogen as the quench gas. The hollow die was 30 inches OD x 15 inches ID x 103 inches long and weighed 16,000 pounds. The solid die, belonging to a different customer, was 34 inches OD x 64 inches long and weighed 14,000 pounds. Post-quench each component was triple air tempered, resulting in a final hardness of HRC 46-48.
Plasma nitriding, also called ion- or glow-discharge nitriding, is an advanced surface-engineering technique that allows for treatment of many different engineering components made of ferrous and titanium alloys.
“The Bright World of Metals,” the slogan for the joint staging of four technology trade fairs – GIFA (15th International Foundry Trade Fair with Technical Forum), Metec (11th International Metallurgical Trade Fair), Thermprocess (13th International Trade Fair and Symposium for Thermal-Processing Technology) and Newcast (6th International Trade Fair for Castings) – will be held June 12-16 at the fairgrounds in Düsseldorf, Germany. Every four years, these trade fairs are the meeting place for companies from around the world. The exhibits will be complemented by a versatile ancillary program consisting of seminars, international congresses, symposia and lecture series.
Solar Atmospheres of Michigan, formerly Vac-Met, recently purchased 18,000 square feet of plant space on over 4 acres in Chesterfield, Mich. The new building is 20 miles northeast of the two existing Vac-Met facilities in Warren and Fraser. The over $5 million investment gives Solar Atmospheres of Michigan the space to locate its employees and equipment under one roof while continuing to grow. In addition, two new vacuum furnaces were purchases from Solar Manufacturing for the move.
SECO/VACUUM received an order from an electric-vehicle (EV) manufacturer for a two-chamber vacuum furnace that will be used in the company’s R&D lab to low-pressure carburize (LPC) and oil quench prototype gears. The CaseMaster Evolution (CMe) has a working hot zone of 16 x 16 x 24 inches (400 x 400 x 600 mm) and a load capacity of 440 pounds (200 kg). It has a separate heating chamber, where product is heated and carburized, and a quenching chamber, where the load is immersed in an oil bath for rapid quenching. Both chambers are isolated with a vacuum door.
An Asian thread rolling-die conglomerate selected SECO/WARWICK to supply a vacuum furnace that will be used for vacuum hardening and tempering fastener dies. The Vector vacuum furnace has a heating chamber that measures 23.5 x 23.5 x 35.5 inches (600 x 600 x 900 mm), which enables efficient simultaneous heat treatment of many types of parts. The characteristic feature of this design is directional cooling, which guarantees uniform cooling of all the work inside the furnace, even those with problematic shapes. The furnace is also equipped with convection heating, which improves heat transfer efficiency during heating at lower temperatures. The customer needed to add a vacuum furnace that would allow heat treatment of tools for fastener production.
A commercial heat treater based in Mexico purchased a vacuum furnace – the company’s third – from SECO/WARWICK Group. The medium-sized furnace will improve and increase the processing capacity of the company’s hardening processes. Thanks to an energy-saving graphite chamber and above-average cleanliness of operation, the hardening plant will gain new production opportunities. A round heating chamber will enable the efficient heat treatment of large, oversized elements. The characteristic feature of the furnace on order is isothermal hardening, which enables the system to operate with tighter process control. The furnace is equipped with a dew-point sensor that monitors the content of harmful water vapor in the neutral gas and protects the load surface against undesirable oxidation.
On November 16, NASA’s unmanned Orion spacecraft launched successfully from Cape Canaveral for a six-week test flight around the moon and back. This launch marks the first iteration of NASA’s moon-to-Mars Artemis 1 program. Each successive launch is designed to push the rocket through a series of rigorous tests before it is deemed reliable enough to carry astronauts to the moon and eventually to Mars.
Oetzbach Edelstahl, a hardening plant in Germany that provides heat-treatment services, purchased a vacuum furnace from SECO/WARWICK. The medium-sized furnace is the third from SECO/WARWICK to be delivered to this facility. Vector technology allows the user to perform a range of processes from hardening through carburizing, nitriding and cryogenic freezing. The furnace, which has a heating-chamber size of 600 x 600 x 900 mm, enables the efficient heat treatment of tool and machine parts.