Pre-forging billet heating
Induction is increasingly popular choice for heating steel billets prior to forging, due to its ability to create high heat-intensity quickly and within a billet, which leads to low process-cycle time (high productivity) with repeatable high quality, occupying minimal space on the shop floor. It is more energy-efficient and inherently more environmentally friendly than most other heat sources for steel billets.
Incorporating induction heating takes some planning and expertise, but it’s possible to optimize a progressive induction heating system for forging billets using CENOS Platform — a 3D-simulation software focused specifically on induction heating that uses open-source components and algorithms, making it affordable for small and medium-sized operations.
Two- and three-stage heating
3D simulation makes it possible to compare the effects of two-stage and three-stage progressive heating in reaching a billet temperature of 1,200 ℃ ± 50 ℃.
To check both systems the user created set-ups for each one, set physical parameters (material properties, frequency, current etc.), and initiated the simulation. The results showed the different output variables for temperature distribution; current density and Joule heat distribution; magnetic field lines; total, reactive and apparent power; inductance of the coil; coil current, voltage, etc.
The results show the three-stage system can decrease the power consumption and increase the production rate for this specific case.
The simulation also makes it possible to plot comparable distribution of temperature, Joule heat, magnetic field, etc., for the two-stage and three-stage progressive heating systems. Figure 1 shows the temperature distribution in the billet across the radius resulting from the two systems, indicating that better temperature homogeneity is obtained in the three-stage system.
Figure 2 shows how the two-stage and three-stage heating systems lead to different temperature distribution. In two stage system, temperature required for forging is reached with shorter coils, thus also with smaller scanning speed. This leads to less temperature uniformity and lower production rates. On the other hand, three stage heater gradually increases the temperature of the billet and the resulting temperature difference between core and surface is less.
CENOS users are free to change all the input parameters and assemble the system of any number of stages required for their process.
Required operating system is Microsoft Windows 7, 8 or 10. The required hardware is minimum Intel i5 processor (or similar), minimum 16GB of RAM, suggested - 32GB of RAM.
Graphics card performance does not play a big role in the simulation: any standard GPU will cope with the visualization.
Additionally, the internet connection is required for software license verification only. An offline version can be purchased upon request.
The CENOS Platform desktop software is downloadable (free to use for 30-days) at www.cenos-platform.com