The ExOne Company was awarded a contract to develop binder-jet manufacturing processes for a novel steel alloy for the United States Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). Awarded by the National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining (NCDMM), the contract aims to develop and qualify AF-9628, a high-strength steel developed by the Air Force, for binder-jet 3D printing.
Nucor Corp. broke ground on its 400-job, $1.7 billion steel-plate manufacturing mill in Meade County, Ky. The project is expected to employ up to 1,500 contractors during construction. Located along the Ohio River in Brandenburg, the 1.5-million-square-foot operation will provide Nucor with 1.2 million tons of annual capacity for steel-plate production. Full-time jobs will include equipment operators, production specialists, safety and environmental technicians, engineers and office support staff. The mill is scheduled to open in 2022.
U.S. Steel announced the successful start-up of its newly constructed, technologically advanced electric-arc furnace (EAF) steelmaking facility at its operations in Fairfield, Ala. The EAF, which will have an annual steelmaking capacity of 1.6 million tons, is the latest milestone providing customer value through the company’s “Best of Both” integrated and mini-mill technology strategy. In the start-up process, Fairfield EAF #1 commenced its first arc, charged and melted steel scrap and tapped its first heat of liquid steel on October 20.
Eaton announced that its Vehicle Group is implementing a new 3D metal-printing program as a part of its Industry 4.0 strategy to reduce development time and improve efficiency. The first metal printer system was installed at its Kings Mountain, N.C., facility, and a global deployment of 3D polymer printing technology is slated to be completed by first-quarter 2021. The 3D printers are being utilized to create high-quality fixtures, safety devices, automation grippers for assembly and handling, and maintenance components requiring replacement. Prototype development is following the same strategy to support faster product-development trials and improve efficiency.
Gasbarre Thermal Processing Systems designed and commissioned a vacuum oil-quench furnace to an international manufacturer. The batch system, which has an isolated graphite heating chamber, is capable of processing 12-inch-wide x 12-inch-high x 36-inch-long loads weighing up to 500 pounds. It is rated for operation up to 3000°F (1649°C). The modular furnace design gives the company the capability of utilizing the 2-bar gas quench in the heating chamber or transferring through internal doors to the oil-quench module.
Solar Atmospheres of California and Kittyhawk announced a strategic partnership for vacuum heat treating and hot isostatic pressing (HIP) services. Because many parts require both heat treating and HIP, the relationship allows the customer to work with two companies that have extensive experience and a strong reputation within the industry. Solar Atmospheres and Kittyhawk are both Nadcap, ISO 9001 and AS9100 certified, and both companies maintain source approvals for a full line of major aerospace primes.
The global aluminum company formerly known as Braidy Industries announced a new name. Introduced as Unity Aluminum, the Ashland, Ky.-based company will continue to play a leading role in the aluminum industry by addressing a substantial global aluminum shortage impacting American jobs and economic growth. The new name signifies the company’s steadfast commitment to its customers, innovative technologies and local community in Ashland. Unity Aluminum has accelerated its plans to build the world’s most technologically advanced aluminum rolling mill. It is currently working to finalize fundraising and begin construction.
Tenova started up what it says is the most productive electric-arc furnace (EAF) in history at Acciaieria Arvedi in Cremona, Italy, in September 2020. The Consteel EAF replaced an existing Consteel furnace that was originally installed in 2008. It has a tapping size of 300 metric tons and is designed to reach a power-on time of 37 minutes with a charge mix including up to 30% HBI or other scrap substitutes. The EAF has a 9.1-meter-diameter shell and is continuously fed by a 4-meter-wide slip-stick conveyor. It is also equipped with a state-of-the art automation package.
Liberty Steel Group, part of GFG Alliance, announced that it made a non-binding indicative offer (NBIO) as part of a thyssenkrupp-led process to acquire the steel activities of thyssenkrupp. Liberty Steel, a global steel and mining business, has 30,000 employees in more than 200 locations on four continents. A possible combination of Liberty Steel and thyssenkrupp Steel would create a group well positioned to tackle the challenges faced by the European steel industry.
Ritchey Metals, a Canonsburg, Pa.-based manufacturer of zinc alloys, entered into a joint venture with Imperial Group to serve the nonferrous alloyed metals industry in the southern half of the United States. Chicago-based Imperial Group, which consists of 17 industrial entities, is a diversified metals group moving nearly 75 million pounds of metal per month. The joint venture will utilize Imperial Group’s plant in Scottsboro, Ala., which will add capabilities to service the market stretching all from the East Coast to the Southwest. Ritchey Metals operates two facilities in southwestern Pennsylvania, each with multiple industrial furnaces.
Check out the October 22, 2020 issue of Industrial Heating, featuring the "Improving Kiln ROI: Taking Back Lost Profits with a Bricking Machine", "Industrial Automation: Manufacturing, Heat Treating and Data Analytics", "Optimizing Burner Management and Combustion Control with Safety PLCs", and much more.