Modular Horizontal Continuous Casting Machine: Meeting the Challenge of Flexible Manufacturing of the Future
Manufacturing of the future has to be more flexible and versatile in order to meet the ever changing needs of the customer. Most continuous casting machines today are rather inflexible in that they are designed to cast specific types of alloys and with limited size ranges, thus suitable for the mass production paradigm. This paper reports the design and development of a modular horizontal continuous casting machine (HCCM). The aim is to have a machine that can continuously cast a variety of ferrous alloys from carbon steels, low alloy steels, stainless steels to cast irons, and with ranges of cross-sectional areas. The modular design approach and quick changing techniques are employed as the key design concept. The construction of the first prototype of the machine is completed and several field trials have been conducted. The results are promising. For carbon and low alloy steel billets, the overall structures and surface quality are good although the amount of porosities is rather large. The overall quality of stainless steel billets is better than that of carbon and low alloy steels. Adapting and setting up the machine for casting different alloys and/or different billet sizes require a little time, no more than 20 minutes.
Daizhong Su, Qingbin Zhang and Shifan Zhu
P. Chaengkham and P. Srichandr, "Modular Horizontal Continuous Casting Machine: Meeting the Challenge of Flexible Manufacturing of the Future", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 419-420, pp. 349-352, 2010