Carbon control in PM Sintering
Magazine article, 2014
Challenges in controlling carbon potential during sintering of steel powder have been discussed in many experimental and theoretical studies. The main issues lie within the complex thermodynamics and kinetics of processing atmosphere chemistry in continuous sintering furnaces. Although many models have tried to address the problem, many of these have rarely come to reality and become an industrial practice. The purpose of this article is to summarize these discussions and investigate the interaction of the atmosphere constituents with the sintered compact within a sintering furnace. Considering an industrial practice perspective, the paper ensures the PM industry with a few new look into the understanding of furnace operations and provides recommendations to improve the control of the furnace conditions. As an example, existing furnace installation utilizing Linde Sinterflex(R) technology allows monitoring and/or controlling the furnace atmosphere. This article describes the reduction of oxides and carbon potentials to enable optimisation of the production parameters.