Primary Metals Manufacturing Solutions

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PSI have worked for many years with customers in the primary metal processing and manufacturing industry. Whether it be steel, aluminium or other metals, the application calls for robust products often specifically manufactured for these particularly harsh and unforgiving environments.

As the sole distributors for MAC Valves and PHD in the UK and Ireland, we are able to work with our primary metal customers to provide tailor-made solutions for many demanding applications delivering specialised valves, cylinders and grippers for many automated applications requiring rugged and durable components.

We are even able to provide many application specific solutions developed directly for the industry, a few examples are below:

Aluminium – Crust Breaking

The crust breaking function is critical to efficient aluminium production with all parts of the system, including automation components, required to operate in extreme environmental conditions. Only the most durable and specifically designed products survive.

The hostile environment typically consists of high temperature, constant exposure to very fine alumina dust, corrosive fluoro gases and the presence of extremely high magnetic fields.

At PSI, we have various crust breaking solutions to suit all aluminium production customer requirements. We reduce compressed air demand through the installation of a Mac Valves ‘air saver’ valve, deliver highly reliable solutions for pneumatic control of crust breaking and complete crust breaker system assemblies. These drop-in replacement solutions also include the feeding system for dosing alumina and additives after the crust has been broken.

Steel – Roll Chock Springs

Replacing mechanical springs with Jarret viscoelastic springs provides an extremely compact, high-quality spring with dependable retention of initial spring characteristics, even after years of non-use. The Jarret spring requires no maintenance or adjustment in service and eliminates the need for additional shimming or troublesome latching mechanisms. This solution enables safe and stable transportation of roll assemblies and reduces the time required for roll changing by 75%.

Crane End Stops

Cranes are used widely for materials handling within the primary metals industry. Protection is required to prevent damage to the crane or the surrounding structure by bringing the crane to the end stops in a controlled manner. This is particularly important should the crane approach the end of its travel at a higher than normal speed or in an emergency.

Cast Product Handling

Many cast items require automated handling through the manufacturing process. With such a challenging operating environment, only the most robust equipment will deliver the necessary performance. The PHD gripper range is used extensively in conjunction with robotics to handle engine blocks, crankshafts, automotive wheels and hot billets quickly and safely to improve production throughput. The rugged design of the PHD grippers also brings a reduction in maintenance requirements.

Pulse Valves in Dust Collectors and Silos

Many primary metal production areas produce dust which needs to be removed from the environment, typically using a baghouse or dust collector. The filters and bags contained within these units are cleaned using compressed air and pulse jet technology. Compressed air is a costly commodity, and typically the baghouses suffer with valve leakage and early failure resulting in costly, repeated maintenance.

The Mac Pulse Valves are the perfect solution to this issue, delivering increased cleaning and reducing costs. The short return on investment (ROI) achieved by converting to the Mac technology is achieved through a very efficient cleaning pulse and a very long life valve. Additional cost reduction is seen in many areas, including reduced energy requirements, less maintenance and access costs and longer life from filters and bags. It also improves production output due to reduced downtime or production rate limitations resulting from poor extraction.

Pulse valves are also used extensively in silo applications where raw or finished product is stored. The superior performance of the Mac valve helps to eliminate environmental contamination issues which occur when product is emitted from relief vents while the silo is filled. This is typically caused by ineffective cleaning of the filters by the existing valves.

Many other applications exist across primary metal plants where PSI can improve operations such as hot strip mill down-coiler, larry cars, billet catching and slab roll table end-stops and many more.