A modern foundry cannot depend exclusively on the analysis of the iron quality to control the production process. Thermal analysis is no longer enough! Think about sand properties, inoculation data, casting geometry and module, pouring temperature, core parameters, nodularization treatment, all contribute to having a good or a bad casting!
So, why focus only on the iron quality?
BORN TO COMMUNICATE
ITACA X is the latest generation of process control systems of the final iron on pouring line or pouring area, for quality conscious iron foundries.
ITACA X monitors the status of the final iron with thermal analysis and other process data by comparing current conditions with the requirements of each individual casting. The analysis can be adapted based on geometrical features and historical defects of a casting.
MULTIPLE ACQUISITION CHANNELS
Each ITACA X channel can be equipped with two or more acquisition thermocouples, based on the kind of analysis required by the foundry:
This function gives foundries maximum flexibility on the type of acquisition they want to perform, including eutectoid acquisition for prediction of the mechanical properties of ductile iron.
The purpose of ITACA X is to be a knowledge platform, for better precision in the foundry process. The focus of the system is not on the quality of the iron, but mainly on the quality of the final casting.
- The system uses the state-of-the-art PROFINET technology to communicate with other systems, enabling real-time data from the foundry’s PLC. This makes the system able to communicate with any connected system and use its data to control the process:Base iron properties;
- Chemical composition;
- Iron temperature (option);
- Sand properties (option);
- Cores parameters (option);
- Moulding and Pouring parameters (option, described later in Autobatch section);
- Casting features from technical office;
- Feedback from quality department (option);
- ITACA Vision (if present), ProserviceTech’s process control system dedicated to the analysis and control of the in-stream inoculation process;
- ITACA Stream (if present), the inoculation device engineered for dynamic control of the in-stream inoculation process;
- ITACA Pyro (if present), a system developed to improve the accuracy of the temperature measurement mould by mould;
- ITACA Scale (if present), ProserviceTech’s system to provide an accurate and traceable final addition to the base iron;
TOTAL PROCESS CONTROL: WARNING MODULE
The combination of all process data (thermal analysis of cast iron, chemical composition, pouring temperature, sand properties, casting properties, etc.) is used to thoroughly analyse production in real-time, via the Warning Module. What is a “warning”?
It is an alarm related to the production process, which takes into consideration one or more parameters set by the settings, and their boundary conditions derived from all the data sources present in the foundry.
Ex: Mould Deformation
- Graphite Expansion too high (Thermal Analysis parameter)
- Sand Compatibility too low (Sand Property).
Ex: Cold Junction
- Liquidus Temperature too high (Thermal Analysis Parameter)
- Pouring Temperature too low (process Parameter).
AVOID OPERATORS MISTAKE: THE AUTOBACTH (Option)
Following the goal of total integration, ITACA X can be connected to a pouring or moulding machine to automatically update the reference (casting, family of castings, …) to be correlated with other data. In this way, it is possible to completely avoid the error of the operators when carrying out any analysis. This function (option) is possible when all the castings, with their features and properties, are stored inside the ITACA Database (the insertion can be automatic, through connection to the foundry db / erp system, or manually).
MAKE THE DATA ASSOCIATION EASIER
Process traceability requires a strong but intuitive way to make the association between different data sources.
In ITACA system it is possible to create a unique barcode/QRcode to identify one thermal analysis.
- This small module allows you to make a one-way association between the different types of analysis linked to the system, in extremely high levels of customization: Data Entry – small software interface installed directly on the spectrometer pc;
- Remote ITACA display – installed in the spectrometer lab;
- Manual input;
The operator has only to scan the code with a QR Code reader and that is all! No more manual handling or manual data entry!
CONNECTION WITH AUTOMATIC DOSING SYSTEM (OPTION)
However, the weighing and alloy additions operations are usually two steps without traceability control.
To counter this aspect and maintain the concept of operator behaviour control of, ITACA X can be easily connected with ITACA Scale, ITACA Stream XL, ITACA Optidose and ITACA Wire for semi-automatic or automatic material additions.
Thanks of its flexibility, ITACA X can virtually communicate with all the automatic dosing systems present in the foundry (ProserviceTech reserves the right to evaluate the feasibility of this connection).
All ITACA Systems are designed, engineered and programmed by ProserviceTech, and are Plug&Play to each other, using well-known and tested communication protocols.
Check out more!
REMOTE INTERFACE FOR OPERATORS (Option)
If you think your foundry is too big and operators may be wasting time getting in front of the main unit, don’t worry!
ITACA X, like ITACA Meltdeck, can be equipped with remote displays to be installed directly near to melting furnaces, in order to let the operators use the system without need to run inside the foundry.
ITACA Remote display can be simply customized, in terms of input and output (data to be displayed), in order to meet the foundry needs.
Each remote display is provided with a lamps tower showing, in a very fast and intuitive way, the global metallurgical status of the furnace.
ITACA FOR NO-BAKE
The main difference with respect to the green-sand moulding process is that, many times, it is necessary to start the iron analysis without knowing exactly which castings is going to be poured.
With ITACA X No Bake it is possible to start the analysis without a specific reference, by carrying out the association of the casting / batch code in a second phase. In this way, ITACA X guarantees total traceability and calculations as for the standard version dedicated to the green-sand process. In case the operators know before the casting they’re going to pour, ITACA can calculate the warnings and defining the actions to be taken before pouring the castings, in case the operators know it before.