ITACA Wire™, the customizable cored wire feeding system for Mg treatment and Inoculation

The cored wire treatment process is generally known to have many benefits compared to conventional treatment methods and has a great scope for automation. The benefits combined with favorable production economics is making many foundries to look deeply into cored wire treatment for both ductile iron and CGI.

Optimal use of cored wire can be calculated dynamically through integration with ITACA MeltDeck™ & ITACA X.

The cored wire process removes the need for many of the manual operations needed with conventional methods. ITACA Wire gives the unique option to control the treatment process based on the final Mg in a pouring furnace automatically in a Dynamic process. Information about the base and final iron can be shared by ITACA MeltDeck & ITACAX and compared to the targets in the current production procedure. Significant reduction of the Mg consumption can be achieved with the unique design solution made possible with ITACA Wire.

Dynamic vs Static treatment

A static treatment is based on repeating the a constant treatment cycle. With ITACA Wire this can be made with high repeatability and consistency. This is suitable when the treated iron is poured directly into moulds, for example in no-bake moulding or when the iron will be consumed in short time. On the other hand, if the iron is being poured into a pouring furnace where it is mixed with remaining iron from previous treatments this needs to be considered. If not then the iron will suffer from variations in Mg content and the castings will not be consistent. If the pouring furnace is low in Mg, the next treatment must be compensated with more Mg wire. In the other case if Mg is too high when shifting pattern, the next treatment must receive less Mg wire. This Dynamic approach can be automated by ITACA Wire and reduces fluctuations in the final iron and in the castings.

Factors considered in the Dynamic treatment are; Remaining weight in the pouring furnace, wt% Mg in the pouring furnace, target wt% Mg in the pouring furnace, current weight in the ladle, wt% S in base iron, treatment temperature and many others. All of these parameters are available through integration with ITACA MeltDeck & ITACA X.

The Wire feeding system uses cored wire from a spool and injects it into the iron with high precision and repeatability

The ITACA Wire feeders are engineered to ensure excellent grip and that the clamping pressure does not change the shape of the wire. Each station is designed to minimize curvature of the wire going into the iron and to maximize the straightness. This is a key component to increase the efficiency of the treatment cycle and reduce wire consumption.

Active ladle cover technology

ITACA Wire is equipped with an Active ladle cover combined with an automatic fume extraction system that minimizes oxygen during the treatment. The ladle cover is forced against the ladle by pneumatic cylinders supported by spring to provide clamping force and to fix the ladle in position during the treatment. This is critical point that is often overseen on conventional cored wire treatment systems. A final cooling stage with cold compressed air protects the wire from high temperatures at the end of every treatment cycle. Several solutions have been developed by ProService to guarantee maximum efficiency during the treatment process.

ITACA Wire for large castings

A common misunderstanding is that the cored wire process is not suitable for treatment of large ladles. This may have been true several years ago but with the use of multiple feeders and high capacity cored wire (13-16mm) treatments >20 tons are possible. A final inoculation stage with inoculation wire ensures the iron is well nucleated and ready to be poured. This makes the cored wire process ideal for production of wind mill castings and heavy machine parts, etc. One of the main benefits during production of large castings is a significantly simpler process, with less transfers and temperature losses. Feel free to contact us if you are considering cored wire in your process.

Advantages of ITACA Wire™:

  • AUTOMATION: The nodularization & inoculation process can be fully automated
  • THE HUMAN FACTOR: Reduces the possibility of mistakes with additions to the ladle
  • REPEATABILITY: Cored wire allows fully a repeatable nodularization & inoculation process
  • CONTROL: Gives more constant metallurgical results thanks to precise additions of Mg cored wire
  • SAFETY: Increases industrial safety since the process is enclosed inside a cabinet.
  • ENVIRONMENT: Improves the working environment as the fumes can be extracted and filtered rather than being released into the air
  • INTEGRATION: Can be connected to ITACA MeltDeck™ for complete control
  • TRACEABILITY: The entire process can be traced and analysed