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Open Access research with a European policy impact...

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EPRC is a leading institute in Europe for comparative research on public policy, with a particular focus on regional development policies. Spanning 30 European countries, EPRC research programmes have a strong emphasis on applied research and knowledge exchange, including the provision of policy advice to EU institutions and national and sub-national government authorities throughout Europe.

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Finite element analysis applied to redesign of submerged entry nozzles for steelmaking

Ewing, Helen and Hendry, Alan and Nash, David (2011) Finite element analysis applied to redesign of submerged entry nozzles for steelmaking. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part L: Journal of Materials: Design and Applications, 225 (4). pp. 327-339. ISSN 1464-4207

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Abstract

The production of steel by continuous casting is facilitated by the use of refractory hollow-ware components. A critical component in this process is the submerged entry nozzle (SEN). The normal operating conditions of the SEN are arduous, involving large temperature gradients and exposure to mechanical forces arising from the flow of molten steel; experimental development of the components is challenging in so hazardous an environment. The effects of the thermal stress conditions in relation to a well-tried design were therefore simulated using a finite element analysis approach. It was concluded from analyses that failures of the type being experienced are caused by the large temperature gradient within the nozzle. The analyses pointed towards a supported shoulder area of the nozzle being most vulnerable to failure and practical in-service experience confirmed this. As a direct consequence of the investigation, design modifications, incorporating changes to both the internal geometry and to the nature of the intermediate support material, were implemented, thereby substantially reducing the stresses within the Al2O3/graphite ceramic liner. Industrial trials of this modified design established that the component reliability would be significantly improved and the design has now been implemented in series production.