Flow Production Processes to Improve Heat Treatment Efficiency

The highly efficient and versatile TITAN® furnace uses a flow-production process for the integration of premium components, thereby providing multi-purpose processing capabilities that address customers' requirements. This article discusses the role of the TITAN vacuum heat-treating furnace at Rockford Heat Treaters (RHT), a commercial heat treater.

Role of the TITAN® Furnace at RHT

RHT’s TITAN (Figure 1) has an 18" x 18" x 24" work zone with a gross load weight capacity of 2000 lbs. for the hearth. It also features an internal nitrogen cooling system with gas injection nozzles located 360 degrees around the circumference of the hot zone, as well as a diffusion pump for cleaner parts and less oxidation. RHT was initially selected as a beta tester for the TITAN furnace, and the equipment ended up being an excellent fit.

Parts to be loaded into RHT’s TITAN.

Figure 1. Parts to be loaded into RHT’s TITAN.

Since RHT is a commercial heat treater, versatility is a key factor as their thermal processing requirements change on a daily, or even hourly, basis. In addition, process control and furnace maintenance are also imperative for successfully handling a variety of materials.

The TITAN furnace requires simple maintenance, thanks to the built-in preventative maintenance feature in the software. This feature enables smooth running of the processes. Moreover, the system's software sends alerts to heat treaters when preventative maintenance measures need to be scheduled. Furthermore, it is also possible to set the parameters that gauge the furnace components, such as oil level and hot zone hours, to alert operators when it is necessary to inspect a specific part of the furnace. Figure 2 shows RHT’s TITAN loaded for a new cycle.

RHT’s TITAN loaded for a new cycle

Figure 2. RHT’s TITAN loaded for a new cycle.

New recipes can be set up easily using the software. This allows for faster times between cycles, convenient transition between different processes, and reduced transfer errors. The high adaptability and improved part cleanliness of the TITAN furnace allowed RHT to handle a wide range of jobs that were previously not possible.

For instance, RHT is now able to perform the nickel brazing jobs, thanks to the improved component cleanliness achieved with the TITAN furnace.

In addition, with the TITAN software, data can be easily acquired regardless of the process or customer, thus facilitating documentation of the heat processes. It is also able to satisfy many different industry requirements, including Nadcap and AMS 2750E.

At the RHT facility, the TITAN furnace runs continuously due to the equipment’s improved energy efficiency. As a result, the commercial heat treater is able to accept more jobs and experiences improved productivity. The TITAN Cost Savings Calculator is a simulation tool that demonstrates the cost and environmental advantages TITAN furnace over traditional vacuum furnaces (Figure 3).

Ipsen’s TITAN stands among the many Ipsen furnaces in RHT’s facility.

Figure 3. Ipsen’s TITAN stands among the many Ipsen furnaces in RHT’s facility.

Conclusion

TITAN furnaces are available in a range of configurations and sizes, and their versatility make them able to continuously run a variety of workloads through numerous heat treatment processes.

The combination of Ipsen workmanship and premium components merge in a flow-production process that provides rapid delivery, installation and startup. This allows customers to take advantage of the TITAN's advanced technology when the need arises.

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This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Ipsen.

For more information on this source, please visit Ipsen.

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