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Afrox maximises efficiency in metal preheating with OXYGON®

Afrox is maximising efficiency in the metal production industry with its powerful OXYGON® solutions – effective vessel preheating processes that go beyond conventional burner designs by harnessing the highly efficient power of a flameless oxyfuel combustion system.

These advanced and controlled combustion programmes ensure optimal heating curves that can reduce ladle heating times from 90 minutes to 40 minutes, thus reducing the number of ladles in operation while at the same time maximising refractory lifetime, increasing efficiency and lowering emissions.

Simphiwe Molefe, Applications Specialist for Bulk Markets at Afrox, says that while the process of using vessels and runners to transfer hot liquid metal between melting and casting operations is well known in the metal production industry, many producers still encounter problems during transition periods where heat is lost, affecting the quality for the next stage of production.


Oxygon 400 Installed at a customers site

“Airfuel-based combustion often leads to large quantities of heat loss and sometimes conventional equipment can’t heat ladles to the required temperature within the set timeframe, which creates problems later, as it becomes costly and difficult to maintain a high and consistent level of preheating,” he explains.

“When one of Afrox’s combustion control system is integrated into the process chain, there is no need for over-heating or additional heating as the OXYGON® solution can ensure a consistent temperature from one phase to the next.”

The dispersed flame is distributed uniformly throughout the vessel and as a flameless oxyfuel burner system is used, the OXYGON® system can contribute up to 55% fuel savings while simultaneously reducing NOx and CO₂ emissions.

Afrox’s advanced burner control solutions can be integrated into existing systems and tailor-made to individual customer needs. They are compact, simple and powerful, yet easy to fit on any vessel preheating system. Once installed, a mobile device app can be used for monitoring and scheduling.

The two oxygen solutions available from Afrox are

  • OXYGON® 400 with a nominal power of 400 kW for vessels with capacities from 1 to 20 tonnes. This solution is ideal for customers looking for a simple, efficient method of preheating typically found in foundry vessels.
  • OXYGON® XL with a 0.8 – 1.5 MW burner suitable for vessels with capacities from 30 to 150 tonnes and offering a more advanced control system than OXYGEN®400.

Both systems feature  an integrated burner pilot and UV cell with leak testing to ensure safety at all times, compact and easy installation, flowtrains for fuel and oxygen, and semi-flameless combustion. They are compliant with local safety standards and have programmable heating curves for drying and reheating.

Molefe says that Afrox can provide a trial unit for customers who are interested in converting to the OXYGON® preheating system, offering customers the opportunity to determine whether such a system will work for them as well as their specific requirements.

Afrox’s unique flameless oxyfuel preheating systems can be easily incorporated into any metal production process and is already in use by one of Afrox’s customer for a number of years.

In addition to providing industrial gases and innovative application technology and equipment, Afrox also safeguards operational efficiency by ensuring that systems are installed correctly and that the process runs smoothly afterwards, with highest reliability and safety standards guaranteed. Simulation tools can be used to estimate individual customer savings and across the globe OXYGON® solutions have already generated quantifiable results in industries as varied as steel, aluminium, iron and ferroalloys.

“As part of the global Linde Group, we are in constant contact with the Linde research and development team to bring new solutions and technology to the southern African market, and are able to offer our customers complete gas solutions,” concludes Molefe.

For more information about the OXYGON® solutions from Afrox, contact Simphiwe Molefe on 011 490 0470 or simphiwe.molefe@afrox.linde.com.

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