Nervacero Reaps the Benefits of AMETEK Land's Latest Slag Detection System

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Nervacero S.A., a leading Spanish manufacturer of corrugated rods, is achieving increased productivity and process optimisation as a result of implementing AMETEK Land’s Slag Detection System.

Nervacero Reaps Benefits of AMETEK Land's Latest Slag Detection SystemThe Slag Detection System (SDS) is a continuous thermal monitoring system, which provides accurate and timely detection of slag carryover in the steelmaking process and was originally integrated into its production facility back in 2008. Processing over 700,000 tons of molten steel per year, Nervacero recently upgraded to the latest SDS-E version and uses it in the melt shop for monitoring the steel stream from the electric arc furnace (EAF) to the ladle.

Pablo Beitia, Director at Nervacero S.A. in Spain, explains: “The SDS-E has helped to reduce slag carryover significantly and ladle refractory wear. One of its major benefits is that it utilises powerful fully-featured software with an easy to use interface, which provides quick and accurate results, with alarms and automatic stream tracking, and robust data analysis and reporting.

The SDS-E has improved our ferroalloy performance whilst enhancing productivity of our melt shop and refining process.  We have also been able to reduce our use of additives, therefore lowering our overheads, and avoid any ladle overfilling issues. I would recommend the SDS-E as a highly effective slag detection solution to any manufacturer.

Iñaki Araquistain
, Regional Sales Manager - Spain and Portugal from AMETEK Land, said: “It is great to hear such positive feedback about our SDS-E. Nervacero and other steel producers are finding that this technology allows plants to improve yields, produce higher-quality steel and reduce the costs of downstream processing. There are additional benefits as well in improved operator safety.

AMETEK Land’s SDS-E uses a high-resolution thermal imaging camera to detect the transition between steel and slag. At the end of the tap, the levels of slag and steel rapidly reverse. Quick termination of the tap after an alarm has been triggered is necessary to prevent excessive levels of slag in the ladle.

The dedicated thermal imaging camera is specifically designed to survive in the harsh operating conditions and utilizes a particular wavelength to reduce “blackouts” caused by smoke and fumes. Data presented to operators in real time enables them to make informed decisions about the tapping process.

Use of the SDS-E has been demonstrated to improve operator response time and consistency at the end of each tap. This results in a typical reduction in slag depths of up to 25%, compared with traditional methods of stream monitoring.

The cost of additional downstream processing time and materials can be a significant burden on an operating plant. By controlling slag carry-over, costly downstream processing can be reduced or eliminated, improving plant throughput and operating margins.

As the tap commences, application-dedicated software records it, using a stream identification algorithm and produces a data log and graph for quality control. A stream tracking mechanism is included to ensure reliable operation in typical installation conditions. When slag appears and exceeds an operator-defined amount, an alarm automatically triggers. The system is designed to ensure accurate detection of steel/slag that is independent of charge weight and without operator intervention.

Suitable for operators of secondary steel making vessels (e.g. electric arc furnaces, basic oxygen furnaces) including stainless steel, AMETEK Land’s Slag Detection System is a highly effective solution for monitoring and reducing slag carryover in steel production facilities. It is proven to reduce slag carryover, save money and improve operator safety.