Cleaner Production

The company's objective was to galvanize steel products of constant cross-section, such as reinforcing and structural steel, tubes, wire, and so on, on a more compact production line, using up to two to three times less zinc, with reduced energy consumption and the suppression of all forms of pollution.

FIGURE 1.3 Sketch of a classical hot dip. (From Wang, L.K. et al. Case Studies of Cleaner Production and Site Remediation, Training Manual DTT-5-4-95, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Industrial Sectors and Environment Division, Vienna, Austria, April 1995.)

Decoiling Preheating Shot Heating Galvanizing Cooling Recoiling blasting

FIGURE 1.4 Sketch of the prototype line. (From Wang, L.K. et al. Case Studies of Cleaner Production and Site Remediation, Training Manual DTT-5-4-95, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Industrial Sectors and Environment Division, Vienna, Austria, April 1995.)

Decoiling Preheating Shot Heating Galvanizing Cooling Recoiling blasting

FIGURE 1.4 Sketch of the prototype line. (From Wang, L.K. et al. Case Studies of Cleaner Production and Site Remediation, Training Manual DTT-5-4-95, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Industrial Sectors and Environment Division, Vienna, Austria, April 1995.)

The raw steel is fed in automatically. The process can be operated continuously or in batches, depending on the material to be coated. The surface preparation is performed by controlled shot blasting (Figure 1.4). The steel is heated by induction and enters the coating chamber through a window profiled to match the cross-section of the steel. The zinc is melted in an inert atmosphere by an electric furnace and flows into the galvanizing unit. The liquid zinc is held in suspension by an electromagnetic field. The speed of the production line is controlled by computer. Measuring the thickness of the coating using electromagnetic methods allows precise control of the process.14

The first stage of the project was to develop the technology for coilable material, that is, wire and thin rod. The company later developed the technology to handle rigid steel.

The technology that enabled the cleaner production included induction heating to melt the zinc, the use of an electromagnetic field to control the distribution of the molten zinc, and computer control of the process.

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