Upcoming Events

We are very pleased to confirm our attendance at HaertereiKongress in Cologne and Ankiros-Annofer-Turkcast in October. See details at www.supersystemseurope.com/upcoming-events and below.

On display at each exhibition will be our new range of eFlo 2.0 electronic touchscreen flow meters, the MZA multi-zone gas analyser, and our comprehensive web-based DATACENTER SCADA system, with innovative new mobile applications.


October 16th-18th 2018

HärtereiKongress in Cologne, Germany.

Stand A010 with our Sales and Technical Partner for Germany, Avion. Product and system demonstrations available.

HK


 October 25th-27th 2018

ANKIROS-ANNOFER-TURKCAST 2018 in Istanbul, Turkey.

Hall 8, Stand E160 with our Sales and Technical Partner for the Middle East, Sarvion. Product and system demonstrations available.

Successful 8 Zone Gas Analyser Installation in Sweden

I spent last week in Sweden commissioning a multi-zone gas analyser (MZA) for Epiroc (formerly Atlas Copco) in Sweden. The system was designed specially for Epiroc using SSi’s standard 3-Gas NDIR sensor. 8 furnaces will be continuously sampled, giving Epiroc’s process and maintenance teams full visibility of their furnace’s CO, CO2, and CH4 values. CO and CO2 are key process indicators which can be used to calculate the furnace’s carbon potential. Using Modbus RS485 communications, the NDIR carbon potential can then be compared to the SSi oxygen sensor instrument’s carbon potential and automatically corrected and alarmed if there is a deviation. CH4 values provide useful maintenance data, since high CH4 values are associated with excess uncracked hydrocarbon resulting from leaks or burner tube issues. XGA Viewer software provides remote charting.

The most critical element of installing these systems is minimising leaks between the furnace and the sensor, even tiny leaks can produce significantly inaccurate readings. This can be a frustrating and time-consuming process when there are long tube lengths involved, but it is ultimately rewarding. On this system, the gas analyser returned a carbon potential value of 1.22% whilst the furnace’s oxygen probe control instrument was reading 1.20%. This level of deviation provides Epiroc with the certainty that their parts are being processed in the correct environment and reassurance that if there is a deviation between the two values, it is caused by a furnace issue and not a sampling issue.

Per-Magnus testing the HMI

The MZA during gas trials

Gas trial data

Thanks to Alex of IF TECH (www.furnace.se) and to Per-Magnus of Epiroc for the great support!

Introduction

I’m Will Thompson and I’m interning at Super Systems Europe for the next two weeks. I’ll be working with James on the marketing of SSi’s new and existing products. I’m looking forward to learning more about Super Systems Europe and the European Heat Treating Industry!

Effect of Agitation Fan on Oxygen Probe

Most carburising furnace users know the importance of burning off (or purging) the oxygen probe. This ensures that soot doesn’t build up between the ceramic and steel tubes which can have a drastic affect on the lifetime of the sensor. However, it is not well understood that there are good burn offs and bad burn offs, and a bad burn off can actually reduce the lifetime of a sensor. This is why key metrics should be measured during the burn off process (see more in my blog post from 2017: www.supersystemseurope.com/benefits-oxygen-probe-maintenance).

During a recent project I had some time to experiment with the impact of the agitation fan on the burn-off. I noticed a very significant effect as you can see from the charts below. Figure 1 is the mV response of the oxygen sensor during a burn-off with the fan on. Figure 2 shows the mV response during a burn-off with the fan off.

This simple test showed that the fan is preventing the burn-off air from travelling all the way to the tip of the sensor. If the air was travelling all the way, as in the second example, we would see a far lower mV due to the inverse relationship between mV and oxygen. In this case, the oxygen probe was installed in the roof of the furnace, in close proximity to the fan. The user might consider trying a different spot in the furnace for the oxygen probe, or even temporarily automatically inhibiting the agitation fan during burn off (for a short time only). This could end up drastically improving the life and performance of the oxygen probe.

 

Figure 1. Fan on. Weak mV response (mV drops only to ~850mV) and temperature increase.

Figure 2. Fan off. Strong mV response and smaller temperature increase.

Temperature Uniformity Surveys (TUS) with Super Systems Europe

Put simply, a Temperature Uniformity Survey (TUS) ensures that components see the same temperature regardless of where they are in the furnace.

AMS 2750e requires heat treaters to classify their furnaces between +/- 3°C (class 1) and +/-  28°C (class 6), whereas CQI-9 (table A) requires heat treaters to meet a (quite generous) uniformity of +/- 15°C. Note that ‘uniformity’ is generally understood to mean the total deviation around the set point, versus ‘spread’ which has no relation to the set point. It is common to survey a furnace with a good spread (e.g. 10°C), but with a poor uniformity, due often to a poorly positioned control thermocouple.

A TUS can take a furnace out of service for a considerable amount of time, so it is worth maximising that downtime by performing other tests during the TUS. Our engineers will often tune burners and analyse the furnace atmosphere with a PGA3510 (if it is safe to gas up the furnace) during the TUS.

There are two ways to go about TUS with Super Systems Europe:

1) Order an SSi SDS datalogger with SDS reporter and training by an qualified SSi Calibration Engineer. Read more about the SDS datalogger here: www.supersystemseurope.com/product/dataloggers/portable-touch-screen-data-logger.

2) Have an SSi calibration engineer visit your site to perform the TUS for you.  Read more about our calibration services here: www.supersystemseurope.com/services/calibration-services/

Please contact us with any questions or enquiries!

Expanding our engineering team

We are pleased to announce the further expansion of Super Systems Europe. Martyn Capp and Trevor Cotterril (pictured) have joined our growing engineering team.

Martyn will be joining the workshop team, performing oxygen probe and gas analyser repair and certification. Trevor is an apprentice and will be learning the heat treatment ropes from our experienced Engineering Manager Craig Riordan. Welcome to the team Martyn and Trevor!

Rob Wilcox Joins The Team

We’re very pleased to welcome Rob Wilcox to the Super Systems Europe Sales and Engineering team!

Rob brings with him 33 years of heat treatment industry experience. As well as focusing on building our relationships with our UK customers, Rob is also available as a general consultant to help commercial and captive heat treaters improve the quality and efficiency of the the entire operation.

Rob will cover the UK and Ireland and is immediately available on hand to respond to any process control enquiries or advice on meeting the latest quality requirements, specially CQI-9 and AMS2750E. Please do not hesitate to call to arrange an appointment.

Get in touch with Rob:

If you’d like to discuss any product, project, or consultancy enquiries with Rob, please contact him on +447375 660 787, rob.wilcox@supersystemseurope.com, or sales@supersystemseurope.com.

If you require an urgent response, you can email the following groups with initial enquiries:

Sales@supersystemseurope.com for sales enquiries.
Technical@supersystemseurope.com for technical support.
Workshop@supersystemseurope.com for RMAs and product report and repair service.
Accounts@supersystemseurope.com for orders and accounts enquiries.

Quenching Norwegian Style

My final visit of the year was to Norway to perform AMS2750E compliant TUSs on tempering furnaces. This was how we cooled our TUS fixture:

 

Improving Process Quality and Reducing Downtime with SSi Gas Analysers

As an industry, heat treatment is probably fairly conservative when it comes to technological progress, but I’m pleased to work for a manufacturer that is constantly expanding, innovating, and developing its product range. In 2001, SSi produced the first PGA3000 to verify and troubleshoot the a gas carburising furnace’s carbon potential. Today, SSi produces (what I think is) the heat treatment industry’s most comprehensive range of gas analysers, comprising:

  • SGA (new) single gas analysers available in OEM or wall mounted versions.
  • PGA portable multi gas analysers.
  • MGA multi gas analysers available in OEM, wall mounted, or rack mounted (new) versions.
  • MZA multi gas, multi zone gas analysers available in wall mounted or Rittal cabinet versions.
The MZA has proven to be an incredibly successful system because it cost-effectively provides valuable process and troubleshooting data for up to 8 zones from a single sensor. Installation and commissioning of a 4-zone system is typically completed in 2-3 days.

Pictured is a recently completed MGA and MZA installation at a UK aerospace manufacturer. The system measures and automatically corrects the Carbon Potential on three pit furnaces and three endothermic gas generators.

Below are some recently installed systems that demonstrate the versatility of the current range of gas analysers:

4 Zone MZA Rittal Cabinet for a global bearing manufacturer

Pictured is the second MZA cabinet designed and built for installation at a bearing manufacturer in Poland. 9205 controllers were installed alongside the MZA to provide automatic correction of COF and highly precise, stable temperature and carbon potential control.

Rack mounted MGA to replace a Siemens Ultramat 23

SSi developed a 19″ rack mounted MGA due, partly, to multiple requests to replace old Siemens Ultramat (and others) gas analysers. As SSi manufactures the complete analyser, including the 3-gas IR sensor, we can provide rapid, cost effective calibration and repair services meaning that lifetime costs are significantly lower than our competitors.

4 Zone standard MZA for a global fastener manufacturer

An MZA system was recently installed and commissioned in Holland. The CQI-9 compliant system automatically monitors continuous furnaces and endothermic gas generators. It saves process engineers many hours (and many miles) per week versus manual checks.

Please contact us to discuss any of the standard or custom systems mentioned in this blog post!

WE HAVE MOVED!

We are very pleased to announce that we have moved to a larger premises on the Tyburn Trading Estate in Birmingham. We have some exciting plans for the new premises which we will reveal in upcoming blog posts.

We are moving stock on the 15th September so please accept our apologies for any compromise in service. We will resume normal service on the 18th September.

Our new address is:

Super Systems Europe
Unit E
Tyburn Trading Estate
Ashold Farm Road
Birmingham
B24 9QG

Our new telephone number is: +44 (0) 121 306 5180

The previous telephone extensions are now invalid. Please ask whoever answers the phone for the new extension and direct dial details.

See a map showing the new location here: www.supersystemseurope.com/contact/head-office