Refractory Solutions for Copper Melting
Yet there is a cost to the growing demand for copper, both in virgin and recycled forms. In this article, Saint-Gobain explores how innovative refractory solutions are paving the way to more efficient processes in the copper industry.
The Cost of Copper Melting
Primary and secondary copper production are subsequently enormous contributors to the global economy. Yet, there is a tangible environmental cost to copper refining. Saint-Gobain leads the market in high-performance refractory solutions geared towards a sustainable future in critical industries. We offer a choice of finely-tailored refractory solutions for innovative copper melting systems, such as copper shafts and holding furnaces.
What is a Shaft Furnace?
A typical shaft furnace comprises a cylindrical, vertical holding chamber with a tap hole at the bottom and a series of natural gas burners dispersed radially above the tap. Base metals are fed into the top of the furnace where they are preheated by exhaust gas from the burners, before descending through the hot zone, melting, and dispensing through the tap hole.
Temperatures in a typical shaft furnace can routinely exceed 1,200°C, particularly near the burners and tap hole. This demands high-performance refractory solutions that can perform in demanding reducing environments.
Refractory Solutions for Shaft Furnaces
At Saint-Gobain, we always strive to deliver the perfect refractory solutions per customer specifications. In copper melting shaft furnaces, this means taking into consideration both thermal demands and unique geometries, but also the chemical aggressiveness of molten copper with varying chemical compositions. Our latest refractory solution for copper shaft furnaces falls under the Cryston® line; a tailormade range of refractory bricks for challenging hot face environments.
Cryston® CU is a copper-resistant refractory based on nitride or oxy-nitride bonded silicon carbide (SiC), It exceeds conventional nitride and clay-bonded SiC refractory solutions in secondary copper production owing to its superior chemical resistance and outstanding resistance to oxidation. Combined with superb all-round mechanical characteristics, Cryston® CU is the perfect refractory solution for hot face brick work in shaft furnaces.
By engineering high-performance refractory solutions for critical industries, we aim to promote greater efficiency and cleaner processes across the broadest possible spectrum of working environments. This yields a range of tangible benefits, from greater throughput to reduced waste, providing all-round improvements to profitability and sustainability. If you would like to learn more about how Saint-Gobain’s are used in copper melting, simply contact a member of the team today.