New Opportunities ? Exhaustive Monitored Copper Coolers For Submerged Arc Furnaces

Hopf, M.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 6
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2006
The use of water-cooled copper components as sidewall elements of submerged arc furnaces and other pyrometallurgical applications has become increasingly common. The high cooling efficiency of copper has made it possible to increase the service life of furnace refractories when compared to conventional refractory linings. However, even the self-healing effect of ?freezing? worn areas of the lining does not necessarily protect the copper coolers against wear or corrosion completely. In order to avoid furnace explosions, various methods have been used to monitor the wear of coolers. Unfortunately, these have not been able consistently to identify localized wear. Thos Begbie (South African) and SAVEWAY (German) jointly developed technology to embed a line sensor into the copper cooler during the casting process. This system allows an exhaustive monitoring of the copper cooler. A SAVELINE sensor is placed inside the copper-cooling panel between the water-cooling passage and the hot face of the panel. The sensor follows the meandering shape of the cooling water channels. In the first instance, the sensor provides analogue information as the thickness of the copper reduces. Secondly, this wear signal will be confirmed by a signal of interruption if the sensor is washed away. Because of the structure of the sensor, a self-diagnosis is possible and indications can be confirmed (double proofed).Subsequent to the manufacture of some test pieces, coolers for a large submerged arc furnace were manufactured. The sensorized coolers have been installed at the intermittent surface (slag line) where the largest amount of corrosion has been encountered. The system has been operating since December 2005 in what is considered one of the largest submerged arc furnaces in South Africa. Keywords: Pyrometallurgy, furnace, copper coolers, freeze lining, monitoring, Saveway
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