Solar Manufacturing designed, built and shipped a vacuum furnace to a company specializing in tool and die. The furnace, which will primarily be utilized to harden tool steels, is capable of operating temperatures up to 2400°F (1315°C). It features a graphite-insulated hot zone measuring 12 inches wide x 12 inches high x 18 inches deep and a load weight capacity up to 250 pounds.
Wisconsin Oven designed and built a horizontal spray-quench furnace for C/A Design, a supplier to the defense industry based in Dover, N.H. The furnace will be used for the solution treatment of aluminum. It is designed to soak the product load at temperature in the furnace before a pusher mechanism rapidly moves the load into the spray quench, which offers reduced distortion in comparison to submersion quenching. The maximum temperature for this system is 1150°F (621°C), and it has sufficient capacity to heat a 200-pound aluminum load plus the work grid and product fixture.
Retech, a U.S.-based subsidiary of SECO/WARWICK Group, established a cooperation with GeniCore, a Poland-based composite materials engineering company. Thanks to the cooperation, Retech will expand its offering in powder-metal processes with spark plasma sintering (SPS). The SPS process bonds materials using a combination of pressure and thermal energy applied to materials in a mold. It resembles hot pressing, but the SPS process consumes far less energy and, more importantly, can bond a broader range of materials into novel composites unachievable by other processes, according to GeniCore and Retech.
Solar Atmospheres of Michigan Inc., formerly known as Vac-Met Inc., successfully reached its first milestone in the relocation phase. Solar Atmospheres has invested over $5 million in new equipment with all new utilities. The installed equipment includes two vacuum furnaces, an air tempering furnace and a freezer. As a result, the company was able to host its first AS9100D audit at the facility in Chesterfield, Mich. This quality management system audit for aviation, space and defense organizations, which incorporates ISO9001 standards, passed with zero findings.
International technology group Andritz supplied its first carbon-capture plant to the steel industry. The pilot plant started operating at voestalpine’s steel mill in Linz, Austria, in the second quarter of this year. The plant separates carbon dioxide from the flue gases resulting from ironmaking using an amine-based process designed by Andritz. The captured CO2 is filled into large industrial gas bottles and delivered to an Austrian energy storage company that is investigating new ways of making it available for reuse in steel production.
Nitrex successfully commissioned two nitriding systems for Alumil S.A., an extrusion company and producer of architectural systems based in Greece. Alumil recently started up two pit-type nitriding systems installed at separate locations. The first system, which has a 3-ton load capacity, is operational at Alumil’s facility in Greece. The second system, which has a 1.2-ton load capacity, is located at the company’s operation in Serbia. The turnkey solution provided by Nitrex includes Nitreg technology. In anticipation of Alumil’s plans to expand manufacturing capacities in Greece, the system installed at this location has been sized up to accommodate future growth.
One of the largest service hardening plants in Spain has purchased a vacuum furnace from SECO/WARWICK. The furnace on order, a Vector, will increase the company’s efficiency when hardening larger-dimension elements. It will join a machine park in which there is already one Vector vacuum furnace and a two-chamber furnace with an oil quench manufactured by SECO/WARWICK. The vacuum furnace will be equipped with options such as convection, directional cooling and isothermal quenching. According to SECO/WARWICK, it has a large working space measuring 35.5 x 35.5 x 47 inches (900 x 900 x 1,200 mm) with the capacity to adjust to an oversized load by utilizing the advantages of a circular heating chamber.
Tenaris started up a new manufacturing line for the production of its premium series of sucker rods at its industrial center in Veracruz, Mexico. The second line, an investment of $5 million, brings additional capacity to serve the growing market in North America. Tenaris’ flagship AlphaRod series is designed to overcome more demanding fatigue and corrosion-resistance requirements, manufactured for strength and durability in artificial-lift operations.
SMS group and SAIL (Steel Authority of India Limited) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to work together on sustainable steel production and decarbonization efforts. The MoU signifies their commitment to drive developments focused on implementing long-term sustainable steelmaking practices, with an emphasis on decarbonizing steel production in SAIL’s integrated steel plants across India.
Nitrex successfully installed a second set of nitriding and nitrocarburizing systems for a hydraulics manufacturer based in Europe. The investment strengthens the company’s in-house heat-treatment capabilities and reaffirms its commitment to delivering quality components for hydraulic pumps and motors. The company integrated two Nitrex horizontal-type nitrocarburizing furnaces into its existing setup in 2022, paving the way for two identical furnaces in 2023. These systems primarily serve to nitride and nitrocarburize components made from various steels and alloys, such as ductile iron and hardened steel.