Ladle slag carryover is a significant concern for steelmakers working to improve the yield and quality of their continuous casting process. For those seeking an effective method to reduce slag carryover, ladle slag detection systems are an attractive option. These systems can identify and prevent slag infiltration, reducing breakout potential and casting defects.
If you are considering investing in a ladle slag detection system, it’s important to know that these systems can offer an accurate, reliable, and hands-free solution for managing slag carryover. There are also significant economic benefits of a ladle slag system beyond detecting slag to be aware of.
Traditionally, ladle slag has been manually detected by cast-floor operators. These operators are responsible for deciding when slag is present, and closing the gate to end the heat. While this process works, it is not ideal for the continuous casting process. Manual operation isn’t consistent and often results in either too early ladle close or too much slag in the tundish.
Automatic ladle slag detection systems are equipped with a high precision acoustic vibration sensor that is able to identify the exact moment to close the ladle slag gate. This ensures the liquid steel in the ladle is almost completely emptied while preventing slag, contributing to an increase in yield. With more, higher quality steel from each heat, steelmakers can realize significant economic benefits.
Improved Steel Quality
Perhaps the most obvious economic benefit of a ladle slag detection system is its ability to improve steel quality. Acoustic ladle slag detection systems work to detect changes in the vibration of the ladle shroud manipulator. At high sensitivity, these sensors are able to detect the vortex formation, which starts before ladle slag is poured. This early detection means that slag carryover can be entirely prevented when clean steel is a requirement. This delivers overall higher quality steel that produces greater returns for any steel maker.
Improved Casting Practices and Increased Length of Tundish Sequence
Ladle slag carryover can negatively affect a range of components in the continuous casting process. Excessive slag carryover increases nozzle clogging and can shorten the life of the tundish lining. When slag carryover is managed, steelmakers are improving their casting practices, which increases not only the life of important components like the tundish lining but also increases the length of tundish sequence and reduces nozzle clogging.
Short-Term Return on Investment
A high-quality ladle slag detection system like the KT2000 LadleSLAG System delivers a short-term return on investment. After the initial cost of installation, just one sensor per manipulator arm, this system requires virtually no annual maintenance with a sensor lifetime of 5+ years. With some steelmakers seeing improvements of as much as an additional 1 ton of yield per heat, this is an investment that often pays for itself within the first several months of operation.
What’s more, when ladle slag detection systems are paired with detailed analytics, steelmakers can use the data generated from the ladle slag detection system to optimize heat-by-heat performance according to their plant’s specific goals. With the opportunity for continuous improvement of casting practices, steelmakers can easily reap continuous returns as they optimize to increase yield and control cleanliness.
A quality ladle slag detection system provides a range of continuous casting improvements that ultimately contribute to a higher return rate for steelmakers. When slag carryover is reduced or eliminated, steelmakers are able to produce more, higher-quality steel in less time, all economic benefits that contribute significantly to the bottom line.
If you are interested in a ladle slag detection system that can provide these economic benefits while effectively managing ladle slag carryover, talk to the experts at Kiss Technologies or learn more about our KT2000 LadleSlag System.