The melt passes without any turbulence from the furnace to the tundish of the casting machine. Then it travels through the transition tubes into the mold entirely shielded from the atmosphere. That means no oxides can form and enter the ingot. A three-meter-wide caster can cast as many as 30 strands simultaneously – each with a cross section of 75 x 54 mm. Depending on the alloy, the casting speed ranges from 400 to 600 mm per minute. Next, the flying saw cuts the strands into ingots between 650 and 750 mm long.
The ingots are marked with the alloy and cast number, then stacked. Finally, the finished bundles are strapped and, if required, wrapped in stretch foil and color marked. When the bundles reach the weighing table, they receive weighing tickets, then move to the storage conveyor, which can accumulate as many as 32 bundles. All these steps are fully automated.
The plant handles a wide array of alloys, ranging from pure aluminum to 12% silicon and up to 5% magnesium. The most common HDC caster comes in a width of 3,000 mm. It’s capable of up to 13 tons per hour of T-bars or 8 tph of foundry ingots. The largest HDC caster HE has built to date is designed to cast 4 strands of 850 x 300 mm T-bars or 24 strands of 106 x 106 mm ingots simultaneously. Continuous production achieves 17 tph for T-bars and 12 tph for ingots