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Belt casting technology

Casting
Steel: vast potential as an innovative material

Our Belt Casting Technology (BCT®) is another big step towards near-net-shape casting  – and technically revolutionary. Depending on the type of BCT® caster, you can produce different quantities and a variety of product sizes. Even alloys that were previously unsuitable for continuous casting can be processed: The new technology also masters the crack-sensitive among the conventional steel grades and is therefore ahead of the standard process.

Concepts

Batch and inline production

Special features
  • New high-strength, high-ductility steel grades for the automotive industry
  • Horizontal casting: no bending or straightening
  • As the mould is movable, no casting powder is needed
  • Casting process for special grades and small production volumes

With BCT®, SMS group was nominated in 2014 for the "German Future Award – Federal President's Award for Technology and Innovation". The joint project "Horizontal Thin Strip Casting of Steel – Designed to Manufacture New High-Performance Materials in a Resource-Efficient Way" made it into the final round of the competition as one of three ideas. The development partners of SMS group were Salzgitter Flachstahl GmbH and the Technical University of Clausthal.

SMSgroup Plant Image

Batch and inline production

The advantage of a BCT® micro mill is the so-called inline process: Only one system is needed for the BCT® process and hot rolling. The liqid steel is poured into the tundish and from there into another vessel which transports it onto a circulating, cooled belt conveyor.

Energy-efficient process

Our micro mills are designed specifically to slash energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
 

  • Rapid solidification
  • Lower deformation energy
  • No reheating

Technology

New steel products need new casting processes

Forget bending or straightening

Protected from reoxidation, the liquid steel is poured from a conventional ladle into a covered tundish. Then it goes through a submerged entry nozzle into the preheated feeding system. Next, the steel flows onto the moving horizontal mold consisting of the conveyor belt and internally cooled side dams. There is an inert gas atmosphere above the conveyor belt to protect the solidifying steel. Finally, at the rear end of the caster, a defined gas mix directly influences the solidification structure.

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Impressive features

Stress-free strip solidification in horizontal direction:
No bending or straightening
Casting without powder:
Steels with high aluminum content possible
Traveling mold, no oscillation:
Plane strip surface without oscillation marks
Rapid solidification, high casting speed, low casting thickness:
Fine-grain cast structure without risk of segregation
Inert atmosphere and exclusively indirect cooling:
No scale formation during the casting process
Sufficient deformation at strip gauges of 8-20 mm:
High-quality hot strip

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Benefits

Casters customized to your requirements

New steel products demand new casting processes
  • Lightweight design und safety based on high energy absorption 
  • Customized product properties
  • New engineering and design options for components

Extremely versatile, these casters combine with both BOF and electric-arc-furnace melt shops. What's more, we tailor your BCT® installation to your particular needs. You can produce medium-wide strip in the same way as hot-rolled wide strip – in small, medium or high production capacities.

Your benefits:

  • Tailor-made, compact plant design for implementation in all common process routes
  • Cutting-edge casting for integration in state-of-the-art thin strip facilities
  • Unique technology for a wide range of high-performance new steels as well as critical conventional grades
  • No breakouts
  • Lower maintenance compared to conventional continuous casters (e. g. mold and segment shop)
  • No water consumption (closed circuit)
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