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Metal Casting Technologies : September 2006
67 PowerHammer Company Portland, Oregon, USA www.powerhammer.com Represented in Australia and New Zealand by Cast Metals Services Pty. Ltd. Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth Email: firstname.lastname@example.org • by flux design and efficiency of the injection processes. The development of rotary flux feeding has enhanced molten aluminium alloy treatment by combining the best features of rotary degassing and flux injection in a single device. The process also reduces waste by lowering the metallic content of the dross generated. Research in the UK foundry industry revealed that the principal sources of energy waste in aluminium foundries were from inefficient furnace operations, melting loss and low mould yield. Scrap is an emotive subject and is rarely revealed even if it is actually measured in foundries - but it is likely that scrap is a major contributor to low energy efficiency. There is evidence that at least 10% of all castings made are scrapped either in the foundry (internal rejects) or rejected by customers (external rejects). It is a fact that quality control in many foundries often means sorting for defective castings rather than reducing the number produced. The UK studies undertaken showed that there is potential for significant energy saving for metal melting and holding in aluminium foundries, without incurring significant costs. On average, 30% of site energy is used for melting and holding in aluminium foundries Results of practical studies indicated that 20% improvement in melting efficiency is feasible. Furthermore, it is estimated that 10% of the energy used for foundry site services, other than melting and holding could be saved by better 'house-keeping' measures at no cost. It is likely that the aggregated energy saving in aluminium foundries could be at least 20% -- without major capital investments Summarising, every part of the casting process uses energy, but some of the links to energy efficiency are not always obvious. This brief résumé highlights the most important aspects of the process. In simple terms, improving energy efficiency means doing the same work with less energy, which can often be achieved by reducing all forms of waste by eliminating their causes. ● Dr Phil Ramsell is Chairman of the Technical Board of the Institute of Cast Metals Engineers, is a Fellow of the Institute, and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Phil has a Master's Degree in Manufacturing: Design and Technology, and was awarded a doctorate for his work on the environmental impacts of the metal casting industry. He is founder and chairman of Ramsell- Naber Ltd which specializes in metal melting furnaces and associated equipment. WHO'S WHO OF METALS -- ANNUAL 2006/7