The paper presents an analysis of SPC (Statistical Process Control) procedures usability in foundry engineering. The authors pay particular attention to the processes complexity and necessity of correct preparation of data acquisition procedures. Integration of SPC systems with existing IT solutions in area of aiding and assistance during the manufacturing process is important. For each particular foundry, methodology of selective SPC application needs to prepare for supervision and control of stability of manufacturing conditions, regarding specificity of data in particular “branches” of foundry production (Sands, Pouring, Metallurgy, Quality).
The article presents an example of analysis of the influence of selected parameters deriving from data acquisition in foundries on the occurrence of Gas porosity defects (detected by Visual testing) in castings of ductile cast iron. The possibilities as well as related effectiveness of prediction of this kind of defects were assessed. The need to rationally limit the number of possible parameters affecting this kind of porosity was indicated. Authors also benefited from expert group's expertise in evaluating possible causes associated with the creation of the aforementioned defect. A ranking of these parameters was created and their impact on the occurrence of the defect was determined. The classic statistical tools were used. The possibility of unexpected links between parameters in case of uncritical use of these typical statistical tools was indicated. It was emphasized also that the acquisition realized in production conditions must be subject to a specific procedure ordering chronology and frequency of data measurements as well improving the casting quality control. Failure to meet these conditions will significantly affect the difficulties in implementing and correcting analysis results, from which INput/OUTput data is expected to be the basis for modelling for quality control.
The paper includes validation studies of the flow module of the NovaFlow&Solid simulation code. Experiments of ductile iron and gray iron casting in a spiral test of castability were carried out. Casting experiments were then carried out in industrial conditions in the Ferrex Foundry in Poznań and the results are the castability spiral length and local cast iron rate during mould cavity pouring. Simulation tests using NovaFlow&Solid Control Volume code were made. The technological castability test was used to determine thermal-physical data through simplified inversion problem. Influence of physical parameters in the database of simulation code on the spiral length obtained as the result of simulation was analyzed. It was found that critical fraction of capillary flow CLFdown has the biggest impact on cast iron castability in the simulation code. The simulations resulted in defining parameters of gray iron GJL 250 and ductile iron GJS-400-15. For the parameters set, the length of castability spiral in simulations was in accordance with casting experiments.
The paper undertakes an important topic of evaluation of effectiveness of SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems, used for monitoring and control of selected processing parameters of classic green sands used in foundry. Main focus was put on process studies of properties of so-called 1st generation molding sands in the respect of their preparation process. Possible methods of control of this processing are presented, with consideration of application of fresh raw materials, return sand (regenerate) and water. The studies conducted in one of European foundries were aimed at pointing out how much application of new, automated plant of sand processing incorporating the SCADA systems allows stabilizing results of measurement of selected sand parameters after its mixing. The studies concerned two comparative periods of time, before an implementation of the automated devices for green sands processing (ASMS - Automatic Sand Measurement System and MCM – Main Control Module) and after the implementation. Results of measurement of selected sand properties after implementation of the ASMS were also evaluated and compared with testing studies conducted periodically in laboratory.
A significant development of the foundry industry contributes to the creation of high reliability and operational strength castings so that they meet specific standards in accordance with customers’ needs. This technology, however, is inseparably connected with casting defects in finished products. Cast products are subject to various defects which are considered acceptable or not, which is conditioned by the alloy chemical composition and strength characteristics, that is, generally – qualities to be agreed between the foundry and the customer. It is the latter that led the authors to research on designing a tool enabling the most reliable possible assessment of the emerging casting defects, which after proper consultations can be repaired and the casting – sold. The paper presents an original tool named the Open Atlas of Defects (OAD), developed for the last few years to support the evaluation of cast iron defects using Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) casting defects analysis tools (DCC card – Demerit Control Chart, Pareto-Lorenz analysis and ABC analysis). The OAD tool structure was presented as an integral part of the original system module for acquisition and data mining (A&DM) in conjunction with the possibilities of using selected tools for defect analysis support on the example of cast iron casting.