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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X


STEENKAMP, J.D.; PISTORIUS, P.C.  and  TANGSTAD, M.. Chemical wear analysis of a tap-hole on a SiMn production furnace. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2015, vol.115, n.3, pp.199-208. ISSN 2411-9717.

In April 2013 a 48 MVA submerged arc furnace producing silicomanganese was excavated in South Africa. Since the high shell temperatures recorded in the tap-hole area resulted in the furnace being switched out for relining, the tap-hole area was excavated systematically. A refractory wear profile of the tap-hole area with affected hearth and sidewall refractory was obtained in elevation. The carbon ramming paste in front of, above, and below the tap-hole was worn, as was the SiC with which the tap-hole was built. A clay mushroom formed but was detached from the refractories. Thermodynamic and mass-transfer calculations were conducted to quantify the potential for wear by chemical reaction between refractory and slag and refractory and metal in the tap-hole area. It was found that chemical reaction between refractory and slag or metal could offer only a partial explanation for the wear observed; erosion is expected to contribute significantly to wear.

Keywords : excavation; dig-out; post-mortem; submerged arc furnace; silicomanganese; refractory; tap-hole; thermodynamics; FACTSage; mass transfer.

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