Complete Aluminium DC Casting Machine
High-precision technology and best experience delivered to AT customers
Almec Tech DC Casting Machine is a complete semi-automatic plant, designed and assembled for the production of slabs and/or billtes of various dimensions and lenght, aluminium alloys for the industry of vertical semi-continuous aluminium casting process.
The intended use of the machine for vertical semi-continuous casting of aluminium type is to cast, into a mould shell, the aluminium coming from the furnace, cooled through water. The descend is guided by a casting cylinder self guided. The whole system moves fully automatically with the highest satefy application.
The Direct Chill (DC) Casting is the process of aluminium industry, used by primary and secondary aluminium cast houses to manifacture millions of tonnes/ann of wrought alloy products for rolling and extrusion of slabs and/or billets.
During the Vertical DC process, a starting head (or bottom blocks) is placed in the mould where liquid is poured at first place. Once solidification occurres, the starting head loweres either on a platen guided by an hydraulic cylinder, into a pit in the ground, of depht up to 11 mt. The lowering rate is set by the casting speed. The emerging slab/billet is chilled by a water blade. Liquid metal is continuously fed from the metal furnace passing through a degassing filter box, arriving to the mould through a trasfer channel. The metal level into the system is kept under the set limits thanks to laser regulating the movements of the furnace.
Mould lubrication is essential to avoid the ingot/billet shell sticking to it and by this purpose a continuous lubrication system is involved. Almec Tech moulds are provided of a container case with interior baffles to insure rigididty and ease control of the water cooling. Continuous mould lubrication is also essential to avoid surface tears in VDC.
EQUIPMENT COMPONING THE MACHINE
The complete DC casting machine is composed by specific equipment
The installation of the casting cylinder represent the very hearth of the complete DC casting machine. The vertical descent movement of the cylinder represent the moment when the billets and/or slabs is taking shape. Almec Tech supplies cylinders of any lenght and tonnage, in partnerships with world wide producers.
The cylinder consists of the following essential components:
- Piston rod, made of carbon steel and is provided with a surface coating to improve the running characteristics and to prevent corrosion. The resistance to bending, stress resulting from the applied pressure and geometric requirements define the piston rod diameter.
- Piston, which ensures that the piston rod moves concentrically with respect to the cylinder shell.
- Cylinder head, which combines a large number functions, such as the guide for the piston rod, the sealing of the cylinder and the exclusion of dirt. The head is usually bolted or screwed to the cylinder shell and is designed to resist the internal pressure of the cylinder.
- Cylinder cover, manufactured from steel tube and is designed to withstand the pressure and the bending moments to which it will be subjected.
- Bottom, manifactured from carbon steel. It forms the end cover of the cylinder. It is designed to resist the internal pressure and the forces generated by the cylinder by transferring them to any external mounting present
- External mechanical interfaces, to incorporate the cylinder into the construction
- Static seals to fit not moving parts such as the piston with the piston rod, and Dynamic seals used between two parts that move with respect to each other, such as between the piston rod and the cylinder head.
Hydraulic Power Unit
The hydraulic power unit has a capacity from 500 to 3500 lt, with variable flow rate piston, pumped with proportional controls and relative solenoid valves. The system supplied is specifically designed for energy saving. Locking and emergency commands are included. It is responsible of the movement of
- Casting cylinder
- Emergency valve (install on the panel control room)
- Other utilities of the machine
Note: The produced Hydraulic power unit developed by AT takes into account all details of the casting plant and it is optimized during the years to deliver an improved performance.
Tilting equipment holder carriage
Supports and moves the slab and/or billet casting equipment on rails (or roads), moving them from the preparation/maintenance position to above the casting pit. In case of production of billets, the holder carriage is provided with cylinders for tilting the equipment, so routine cleaning can be easily carried out before first start-up.
Slab/Billet casting machine
The complete plant is provided of necessary equipment to cast billets either than slabs, depending on specific customer requests.
A number of 6 equipments, specificly involved in slab and/or billet casting process, represent the core of the casting machine.
In the control room the following equipment are found:
- The PLC machine control: a control panel with buttons and touch screen to controll all parameters of the casting process;
- Dark room.
It is important to keep the temperature below 30°, to prevent the electrical components from heating up.
In the technical room are placed all utilites at the service of the machine, positioned based on the lay out.
- The casting machine hydraulic power unit.
- The Hydraulic Lubrication Unit.
- The Electrical Panel: which contains all HW elements to manage the machine
- The Pneumatic Panel: which contains pneumatic valve(s) needed to manage the pneumatic circuit of the machine.
Pit Edge with Lights and Tilt Grid Supports
It delimits the edge of the casting pit acting as a “splash guard”.
It consists of 4 sectors, one on each side of the pit, on which spotlights are mounted to light up the pit during the casting phases.
The tank edge includes two water cooling circuit quick couplings that automatically connect the tilting equipment holder carriage when it is in the casting position.
It consists in three pumps operating alternatevely (two working and one in standby).
Each pump is equipped with a check valve and manual closing gate for maintenance purposes; the pumps convey in a single manifold.
A pit drainage pump, which is operated during routine maintenance of the pit.
The pump is equipped with a check valve and manual closing gate for (pump) maintenance purposes. The pump’s pipes are separated from the rest of the plant.
SERVICE STATION FOR MAINTENANCE
A number of application dedicated to constant maintenance of all equipments involed in the casting process to ensure efficiency and preserve at its best the status of all instruments.
The service station consists in:
lubrication unit ofr working desk | air warmer for pre-heating the casting table |maintentance table for casting table