In 2014 we finished research works involved in the development of a technology for manufacturing innovative ceramic-carbon foam filters for molten metal alloys filtration, which were financed by the National Centre for Research and Development (NCBiR) from INNOTECH programme resources. A batch of the filters produced in this technology was tested in practice in domestic cast steel and cast iron foundries. The trials were successful and foundries declared their intention to purchase the newly-developed filters for the current production of casts. This provided an incentive for “Ferro-Term” Sp. z o.o. to start design works on the prototype line for a serial production of these filters. At the same time, in co-operation with a scientific consortium, including the co-authors of the technology, i.e. the Institute of Ceramics and Building Materials, Refractory Materials Division in Gliwice, Institute for the Chemical Processing of Coal in Zabrze and Foundry Research Institute in Cracow, the company made a successful attempt to raise some funds for the necessary adaptation of the developed technology from the semi-technical to industrial scale from Intelligent Development Operational Programme. In the article we have presented information on the effects of works performed within the framework of the project entitled “Modernization and adaptation of the existing technological line for purposes related to technology verification and start-up of the production of innovative ceramic-carbon filters for molten metal alloy filtration”.
Trials of cast steel filtration using two types of newly-developed foam filters in which carbon was the phase binding ceramic particles have been conducted. In one of the filters the source of carbon was flake graphite and coal-tar pitch, while in the other one graphite was replaced by a cheaper carbon precursor. The newly-developed filters are fired at 1000o C, i.e. at a much lower temperature than the currently applied ZrO2-based filters. During filtration trials the filters were subjected to the attack of a flowing metal stream having a temperature of 1650°C for 30 seconds. Characteristic of the filters’ properties before and after the filtration trial were done. It was found, that the surface reaction of the filter walls with molten metal, which resulted in local changes of the microstructure and phase composition, did not affect on expected filter lifetime and filtration did not cause secondary contamination of cast steel.
Mechanization of the process of core making with the use of inorganic and organic binders is based, almost solely, on core blowing machines. Presently the core blowing machines are equipped with tools and devices that allow for application of different technologies of core making. Cold-box, hot-box and warm-air technologies require that core blowing machines shall be additionally equipped with either core-box pre-heating system or gas purging and neutralization system, or hot air purging systems. Considering the possibility of using varied, the most advantageous technologies of core making, the production of universal core blowing machines equipped with replaceable devices has been undertaken in Poland. The universal core blowing systems allow for mechanization of core making process also with the use of sand, bonded by modern, eco-friendly binder systems. The paper presents selected results-based evaluation of core blowing process showing the scope of conducted design and implementation works.