Historical aspects of the Continuous Casting and related Technologies for Steel Mar06

Historical aspects of the Continuous Casting and related Technologies for Steel...

Historical aspects of the Continuous Casting and related Technologies for Steel Continuous casting (CC) technology of steel, as a method of solidification processing of liquid steel has a relatively short history —not much longer than oxygen steelmaking. Different to other processes in steel production, continuous casting is the vital link between the liquid and the solid phase and has to live with metallurgical effects as well as mechanical challenges at the same time. Continuous casting transforms liquid steel into solid on a continuous basis and includes a variety of important commercial processes. These processes are the most efficient way to solidify large volumes of liquid steel into simple shapes for subsequent processing. The CC ratio for the world steel industry is now around 96 % of crude steel output which was a mere 4 % in 1970. Continuous casting is distinguished from other solidification processes by its steady state nature. The liquid steel solidifies against the mould walls while it is simultaneously withdrawn from the bottom of the mould at a rate which maintains the solid / liquid interface at a constant position with time. The process works best when all of its aspects operate in this steady-state manner. Relative to other casting processes, continuous casting generally has a higher capital cost, but lower operating cost. It is the most cost- and energy- efficient method to mass-produce semi-finished steel products with consistent quality in a variety of sizes and shapes. Cross-sections can be rectangular, for subsequent rolling into plate or sheet, square or circular for long products and seamless pipes, and even dog-bone shapes, for rolling into I or H beams. Today continuous casting machines consist of modularized technological/mechatronic packages to allow fast design and short project execution time as well as rapid production ramp-up...