In this work, the influence of microwave drying parameters such as irradiation time and microwave power level on the properties of synthetic moulding sands is presented. Determination of compressive strength Rc s, shear strength Rt s and permeability Ps of synthetic moulding sands with the addition of two different bentonites, after drying process with variable microwave parameters were made. The research works were carried out using the microwave oven with regulated power range of the electromagnetic field. From the results obtained, the significant influence of both drying time and microwave power level on the selected properties of moulding sands was observed. In comparison to the conventional drying method, microwave drying allows to obtain higher compressive strength of the synthetic moulding sand. The influence of application microwave irradiation on permeability was not observed. Higher strength characteristics and shorter drying time are major advantages of application of the electromagnetic irradiation for drying of the synthetic moulding sand with regard to conventional drying method.
Ablation casting is a technological process in which the increased cooling rate causes microstructure refinement, resulting in improved mechanical properties of the final product. This technology is particularly suitable for the manufacture of castings with intricate shapes and thin walls. Currently, the ablation casting process is not used in the Polish industry. This article presents the results of strength tests carried out on moulding sands based on hydrated sodium silicate hardened in the Floster S technology, intended for ablation casting of the AlSi7Mg (AK7) aluminium alloy. When testing the bending and tensile strengths of sands, parameters such as binder and hardener content were taken into account. The sand mixtures were tested after 24h hardening at room temperature. The next stage of the study describes the course of the ablation casting process, starting with the manufacture of foundry mould from the selected moulding mixture and ending in tests carried out on the ready casting to check the surface quality, structure and mechanical properties. The results were compared with the parallel results obtained on a casting gravity poured into the sand mould and solidifying in a traditional way at ambient temperature.
No-bake process refers to the use of chemical binders to bond the moulding sand. Sand is moved to the mould fill station in preparation for filling of the mould. A mixer is used to blend the sand with the chemical binder and activator. As the sand exits the mixer, the binder begins the chemical process of hardening. This paper presents the results of decomposition of the moulding sands with modified ureafurfuryl resin (with the low content of furfuryl alcohol below 25 % and different activators: organic and inorganic) on a quartz matrix, under semi-industrial conditions. Investigations of the gases emission in the test foundry plant were executed according to the method extended in the Faculty of Foundry Engineering (AGH University of Science and Technology). Article presents the results of the emitted chosen aromatic hydrocarbons and loss on ignition compared with the different activators used to harden this resin. On the bases of the data, it is possible to determine the content of the emitted dangerous substances from the moulding sand according to the content of loss on ignition.
This publication describes research on the course of the process of cross-linking new BioCo polymer binders - in the form of water-based polymer compositions of poly(acrylic acid) or poly(sodium acrylate)/modified polysaccharide - using selected physical and chemical factors. It has been shown that the type of cross-linking factor used influences the strength parameters of the moulding sand. The crosslinking factors selected during basic research make it possible to obtain sand strengths similar to those of samples of sands bonded with commercial binders. Microwave radiation turned out to be the most effective cross-linking factor in a binder-matrix system. It was proven that adsorption in the microwave radiation field leads to the formation of polymer lattices with hydrogen bonds which play a major role in maintaining the formed cross-linked structures in the binder-matrix system. As a result, the process improves the strength parameters of the sand, whereas the hardening process in a microwave field significantly shortens the setting time.
The results of investigations of moulding sands with an inorganic binder called GEOPOL, developed by the SAND TEAM Company are presented in the paper. Hardeners of various hardening rates are used for moulding sands with this binder. The main aim of investigations was determination of the influence of the hardening rate of moulding sands with the GEOPOL binder on technological properties of these sands (bending strength, tensile strength, permeability and grindability). In addition, the final strength of moulding sands of the selected compositions was determined by two methods: by splitting strength and shear strength measurements. No essential influence of the hardening rate on such parameters as: permeability, grindability and final strength was found. However, the sand in which the slowest hardener (SA 72) were used, after 1 hour of holding, had the tensile and bending strength practically zero. Thus, the time needed for taking to pieces the mould made of such moulding sand will be 1.5 - 2 hours.
In the paper presented are results of a research on influence of electrical and physico-chemical properties of materials being parts of multicomponent and multimaterial systems used in foundry practice on efficiency and effectiveness of microwave heating. Effectiveness of the process was evaluated on the grounds of analysis of interaction between selected parameters of permittivity and loss factor, as well as collective index of energy absorbed, reflected and transmitted by these materials. In the examinations used was a stand of waveguide resonance cavity for determining electrical properties and a stand of microwave slot line for determining balance of microwave power emitted into selected materials. The examinations have brought closer the possibility of forecasting the behaviour of multimaterial systems like e.g. model, moulding sand or moulding box in microwave field on the grounds of various electrical and physico-chemical properties. On the grounds of analysis of the results, possible was selecting a group of materials designed for building foundry instrumentation to be effectively used in electromagnetic field.
The results of investigations of spent moulding sands taken from the mould in which the metal core cooling system - to increase the cooling rate of the ladle casting - was applied, are presented in the hereby paper. The changes of the spent moulding sand at the casting external side being the result of degradation and destruction processes of organic binder, were analysed in this publication. Since the reclaimed material, obtained as a result of the mechanical reclamation of spent sands of the same type, is used as a grain matrix of the moulding sand, the amount of a binder left from the previous technological cycle is essential for the sound castings production. On the bases of investigations of the thermal analysis, ignition losses, dusts contents and pH values of the samples taken from the spent sand the conditions under which the process of gases displacing in the casting mould was realised as well as factors limiting the efficient mould degassing - were considered in this study. The possible reason of a periodical occurrence of an increased number of casting defects due to changing gas volume emission, being the reason of the realised technological process, was indicated.
The results of investigations of the granulation process of foundry dusts generated in the dry mechanical reclamation process of used sands, where furan resins were binders are presented in the paper. Investigations concerned producing of granules of the determined dimensions and strength parameters. Granules were formed from the dusts mixture consisting in 50 mass% of dusts obtained after the reclamation of the furane sands and in 50 mass % of dusts from sands with bentonite. Dusts from the bentonite sands with water were used as a binder allowing the granulation of after reclamation dusts from the furane sands. The following parameters of the ready final product were determined: moisture content (W), shatter test of granules (Wz) performed directly after the granulation process and after 1, 3, 5, 10 days and nights of seasoning, water-resistance of granules after 24 hours of being immersed in water, surface porosity ep and volumetric porosity ev. In addition the shatter test and water-resistance of granulate dried at a temperature of 105oC were determined. Investigations were performed at the bowl angle of inclination 45o, for three rotational speeds of the bowl being: 10, 15, 20 rpm. For the speed of 10 rpm the granulation tests of dusts mixture after the preliminary mixing in the roller mixer and with the addition of water-glass in the amount of 2% in relation to the amount of dust were carried out. The obtained results indicate that the granulator allows to obtain granules from dusts originated from the reclamations of moulding sands with the furane resin with an addition of dusts from the bentonite sands processing plants.
Organic binders applied in foundry plants based on synthetic resins, from the one side influence obtaining the required technological properties by the moulding sand and – in consequence – obtaining good quality castings, and on the other side are the source of volatile organic compounds (VOC). Together with synthetic resins their hardeners, which although added in very small amounts emit during their thermal decomposition substances negatively influencing the natural environment, are also used. Both, resins and hardeners only at the influence of high temperatures accompanying moulds pouring with liquid metal generate harmful volatile organic compounds including compounds from the BTEX group. Investigations of the temperature influence on the kind and amount of organic compounds formed during the thermal decomposition of selected binders and hardeners and their mixtures allow to determine temperature ranges the most favourable for emitting harmful substances as well as to compare their emission from the selected materials. The aim of this study was the determination the temperature influence on formation substances from the BTEX group, during thermal decomposition of the selected binder, its hardener and their mixture. The BTEX group emission constitutes one of the basic criteria in assessing the harmfulness of materials applied for moulding and core sands and it can undergo changes in dependence of the applied system resin-hardener. Investigations were carried out on the specially developed system for the thermal decomposition of organic substances in the temperature range: 5000 C – 13000 C, at the laboratory scale. The investigations subject was the furan resin, its hardener and hardened furan resin. The assessment of the emission degree of the BTEX group in dependence of the system subjected to the temperature influence was performed, within the studies. The temperature range, in which maximal amounts of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes were emitted from tested materials – was defined. The qualitative and quantitative analysis of the BTEX group were carried out with using the gas chromatography technique coupled with the mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
Gas emission from casting moulds, cores and coatings applied for sand and permanent moulds is one of the fundamental reasons of casting defects occurrence. In the previous studies, gas emission was measured in two ways: normalized, in which the evolving gas volume was measured during heating of the moulding sand sample in a sealed flask, or by measuring the amount of gas from sand core (sample) which is produced during the pouring of liquid metal. After the pouring process the sand mould is heated very unequally, the most heated areas are layers adjacent to the liquid metal. The emission of gas is significantly larger from the surface layer than from the remaining ones. New, original method of measuring kinetics of gas emission from very thin layers of sand moulds heated by liquid metal developed by the authors is presented in the hereby paper. Description of this new method and the investigation results of kinetics of gas emission from moulding sand with furan and alkyd resin are shown. Liquid grey cast iron and Al-Si alloy were used as a heat source in the sand moulds. Comparison of the kinetics of gas emission of these two kinds of moulding sands filled with two different alloys was made. The momentary metal temperature in sand mould was assigned to the kinetics of gas emission, what creates a full view of the possibility of formation of casting defects of the gaseous origin. Moulding sand with alkyd resin is characterized by larger gas emission; however gases are emitted slower than in the case of moulding sands with furan resin. This new investigation method has a high repeatability and is the only one which gives a full view of phenomenon’s in the surface layer which determines quality of the casings. The obtained results are presented on several graphs and analyzed in detail. They have a great application value and can be used in the production of iron as well as light metal alloy castings.
The possibility of controlling the solidification and cooling time of castings creates prospects of improving their structure and by the same their properties. Thermal properties of the mould constitute therefore an important factor which is necessary to consider while seeking for the mentioned improvement. The presented work illustrates the method of determining some basic thermal coefficients of moulding material, i.e. the coefficient of temperature equalisation a2, known also as the temperature diffusivity, and the heat accumulation coefficient b2, which characterises the ability of moulding material to draw away the heat from a casting. The method consists in experimental determining the temperature field within the mould during the processes of pouring, solidification and cooling of the casting. The performed measurements allow for convenient and exact calculations of the sought-after coefficients. Examinations were performed for the oil bonded moulding sand of trade name OBB SAND ‘E’. The experiment showed that the obtained value of b2 coefficient differs from the value calculated on the basis of theoretical considerations available in publications. Therefore it can be stated that theoretical calculations of the heat accumulation coefficient are thus far not sufficient and not quite reliable, so that these calculations should be verified experimentally.
The constantly developing and the broadly understood automation of production processes in foundry industry, creates both new working conditions - better working standards, faster and more accurate production - and new demands for previously used materials as well as opportunities to generate new foundry defects. Those high requirements create the need to develop further the existing elements of the casting production process. This work focuses on mechanical and thermal deformation of moulding sands prepared in hot-box technology. Moulding sands hardened in different time periods were tested immediately after hardening and after cooling. The obtained results showed that hardening time period in the range 30-120 sec does not influence the mechanical deformation of tested moulding sands significantly. Hot distortion tests proved that moulding sands prepared in hot-box technology can be characterized with stable thermal deformation up to the temperature of circa 320oC.
The results of researches of sorption processes of surface layers of components of sand moulds covered by protective coatings are presented in the hereby paper. Investigations comprised various types of sand grains of moulding sands with furan resin: silica sand, reclaimed sand and calcined in temperature of 700oC silica sand. Two kinds of alcoholic protective coatings were used – zirconium and zirconium – graphite. Tests were performed under condition of a constant temperature within the range 30 – 35oC and high relative air humidity 75 - 80%. To analyze the role of sand grains in sorption processes quantitavie moisture sorption with use of gravimetric method and ultrasonic method were used in measurements. The tendency to moisture sorption of surface layers of sand moulds according to the different kinds of sand grains was specified. The effectiveness of protective action of coatings from moisture sorption was analyzed as well. Knowledge of the role of sand grains from the viewpoint of capacity for moisture sorption is important due to the surface casting defects occurrence. In particular, that are defects of a gaseous origin caused by too high moisture content of moulds, especially in surface layers.
The results of investigations of thermal reclamation of spent moulding sands originating from an aluminum alloy foundry plant are presented in this paper. Spent sands were crushed by using two methods. Mechanical fragmentation of spent sand chunks was realized in the vibratory reclaimer REGMAS. The crushing process in the mechanical device was performed either with or without additional crushing-grinding elements. The reclaimed material obtained in this way was subjected to thermal reclamations at two different temperatures. It was found that a significant binder gathering on grain surfaces favors its spontaneous burning, even in the case when a temperature lower than required for the efficient thermal reclamation of furan binders is applied in the thermal reclaimer. The burning process, initiated by gas burners in the reclaimer chamber, generates favorable conditions for self-burning (at a determined amount of organic binders on grain surfaces). This process is spontaneously sustained and decreases the demand for gas. However, due to the significant amount of binder, this process is longer than in the case of reclaiming moulding sand prepared with fresh components.
Modern techniques of castings production, including moulding sands production, require a strict technological regime and high quality materials. In the case of self-hardening moulding sands with synthetic binders those requirements apply mainly to sand, which adds to more than 98% of the whole moulding sand mixture. The factors that affect the quality of the moulding sands are both chemical (SiO2 , Fe2O3 and carbonates content) and physical. Among these factors somewhat less attention is paid to the granulometric composition of the sands. As a part of this study, the effect of sand quality on bending strength Rgu and thermal deformation of self-hardening moulding sands with furfural and alkyd resin was assessed. Moulding sands with furfural resin are known  to be the most susceptible to the sand quality. A negative effect on its properties has, among others, high content of clay binder and so-called subgrains (fraction smaller than 0,1mm), which can lead to neutralization of acidic hardeners (in the case of moulding sands with furfuryl resin) and also increase the specific surface, what forces greater amount of binding agents. The research used 5 different quartz sands originating from different sources and characterized with different grain composition and different clay binder content.
Growing emission requirements are forcing the foundry industry to seek new, more environmentally friendly solutions. One of the solutions may be the technologies of preparing moulding and core sands using organic biodegradable materials as binders. However, not only environmental requirements grow but also those related to the technological properties of moulding sand. Advancing automation and mechanization of the foundry industry brings new challenges related to the moulding sands. Low elasticity may cause defects during assembly of cores or moulds by the manipulators. The paper presents the study of flexibility in the room temperature according to new method and resistance to thermal deformation of selfhardening moulding sands with furfuryl resin, containing biodegradable material PCL. The task of the new additive is to reduce the moulding sands harmfulness to the environment and increase its flexibility in the room temperature. The impact of the additive and the effect of the amount of binder on the properties of mentioned moulding sands were analysed. Studies have shown that the use of 5% of PCL does not change the nature of the thermal deformation curve, improves the bending strength of tested moulding mixtures and increases their flexibility at room temperature.
The results of investigations of spent moulding sands taken from the mould at various distances from the surface of the produced casting, are presented in the paper. The casting mould was made with an application of the cooling system of the metal core in order to increase the cooling rate of the ladle casting. As temperature measurements in the mould indicated the heat flow from the metal did not create conditions for the complete burning of a moulding sand. The analysis was performed to find out changes of spent moulding sands caused by degradation and destruction processes of organic binders. Conditions occurring in the casting mould were discussed on the bases of testing: ignition losses, dusts contents, pH reactions and the surface morphology of the moulding sand samples. Factors limiting the effective mould degassing were pointed out. Operations, possible for realization, which can limit the reasons of a periodical occurrence of increased amounts of casting defects due to changing gas evolution rates being the result of the technological process, were also indicated.
The necessity of obtaining high quality castings forces both researchers and producers to undertake research in the field of moulding sands. The key is to obtain moulding and core sands which will ensure relevant technological parameters along with high environmental standards. The most important group in this research constitutes of moulding sands with hydrated sodium silicate. The aim of the article is to propose optimized parameters of hardening process of moulding sands with hydrated sodium silicate prepared in warm-box technology. This work focuses on mechanical and thermal deformation of moulding sands with hydrated sodium silicate and inorganic additives prepared in warm-box technology. Tested moulding sands were hardened in the temperature of 140oC for different time periods. Bending strength, thermal deformation and thermal degradation was tested. Chosen parameters were tested immediately after hardening and after 1h of cooling. Conducted research proved that it is possible to eliminate inorganic additives from moulding sands compositions. Moulding sands without additives have good enough strength properties and their economic and ecological character is improved.
More and more foundry plants applying moulding sands with water-glass or its substitutes for obtaining the high-quality casting surface at the smallest costs, consider the possibility of implementing two-layer moulds, in which e.g. the facing sand is a sand with an organic binder (no-bake type) and the backing sand is a sand with inorganic binder. Both kinds of sands must have the same chemical reaction. The most often applied system is the moulding sand on the water-glass or geopolymer bases – as the backing sand and the moulding sand from the group of self-hardening sands with a resol resin – as the facing sand. Investigations were performed for the system: moulding sand with inorganic GEOPOL binder or moulding sand with water glass (as a backing sand) and moulding sand, no-bake type, with a resol resin originated from various producers: Rezolit AM, Estrofen, Avenol NB 700 (as a facing sand). The LUZ apparatus, produced by Multiserw Morek, was adapted for investigations. A special partition with cuts was mounted in the attachment for making test specimens for measuring the tensile strength. This partition allowed a simultaneous compaction of two kinds of moulding sands. After 24 hours of hardening the highest values were obtained for the system: Geopol binder - Avenol resin.
The presented in the paper investigations were aimed at the determination of the reclaimed material (obtained in the dry mechanical reclamation process) addition influence on properties of moulding sands with hydrated sodium silicate modified by colloidal suspension of zinc oxide nanoparticles in propanol. Nanoparticles originated from the thermal decomposition of alkaline zinc carbonate, were used. The results of the reclamation of the spent moulding sand with hydrated sodium silicate performed in the AT-2 testing reclaimer are presented in the paper. Both, spent sands from the Floster S technology and from the technology with the modified water-glass were subjected to the reclamation processes. The following determinations of the reclaimed material were performed: pH reaction, acid demand, ignition loss and Na2O content. The obtained reclaim was used as a matrix component of moulding sands with water-glass in the Floster S technology, in which it constituted 60% and 50% of the sand matrix. The strength properties of the prepared moulding sands were determined (bending strength Rg u , tensile strength Rm u ) after samples storing times: 1h, 2h, 4h and 24 hours.
The development of economy and industry introducing new technologies and materials often means the increased threat of occurrence of factors harmful to humans and environment. Workers employed in foundries as mould pourers are the group of high professional risk. Foundry moulding sands when poured with liquid metal are a source of the emission of harmful, toxic and carcinogenic (benzene, PAHs) compounds. The paper presents the results of studies on the concentration of chemical compounds emitted in the process of casting aluminium alloy and brass using moulding sands with the new inorganic binders. The specific values of the exposure indices were compared with the limit values. This enabled an assessment of the impact of moulding sands on work environment. The obtained results were compared with the values of contaminants emitted when pouring foundry moulds made from furan sands and bentonite sands with an addition of coal dust. Studies were carried out under the project POIG.01.01.02-00-015/09 "Advanced materials and technologies."
The spectroscopic FT-IR and FT-Raman methods allowed to identify the cross-linking process of the aqueous composition of poly(acrylic acid)/sodium salt of carboxymethyl starch (PAA/CMS-Na) applied as a binder for moulding sands (as a novel group binders BioCo). The cross-linking was performed by physical agent, applying the UV-radiation. The results of structural studies (IR, Raman) confirm the overlapping of the process of cross-linking polymer composition PAA/CMS-Na in UV radiation. Taking into account the ingredients and structure of the polymeric composition can also refer to a curing process in a binder - mineral matrix mixture. In the system of bindermineral matrix under the influence of ultraviolet radiation is also observed effect of binding. However, the bonding process does not occur in the entire volume of the investigated system, but only on the surface, which gives some possibilities for application in the use of UV curing surface of cores, and also to cure sand moulds in 3D printing technology
The paper presents possibility of using biodegradable materials as parts of moulding sands’ binders based on commonly used in foundry practice resins. The authors focus on thermal destruction of binding materials and thermal deformation of moulding sands with tested materials. All the research is conducted for the biodegradable material and two typical resins separately. The point of the article is to show if tested materials are compatible from thermal destruction and thermal deformation points of view. It was proved that tested materials characterized with similar thermal destruction but thermal deformation of moulding sands with those binders was different.
In recent years, an increasing interest in sandmixes containing inorganic binders has been observed. These binders, including water-glass, are harmless for the environment, neutral for humans, and relatively cheap. In spite of numerous advantages, their wide application is restricted by poor knock-out properties and problems related to rebonding. Therefore, numerous researches aimed at eliminating the disadvantages of water-glass binders are directed, among others, to modifying the structure of hydrated sodium silicate or to applying new hardening techniques. An innovative method of rapid hardening by microwave heating, permitting the restriction of the quantity of binder used and thus improving knock-out properties, meets the expectations of present-day foundries. In this paper, available information is compiled on microwave hardening of water-glass containing sandmixes; furthermore, the costs of practical application of this technology are evaluated on the grounds of the authors' own research.
In this paper the results of studies of polymeric binders on the example of the new BioCo2 binder, including the problem of its renewability, are presented. The results of structural studies (FT-IR) for the BioCo2 binder before and after crosslinking, and bending strength tests Rg u fresh and renewed cured molding sands with BioCo2 binder are discussed. The cross-linking binder and curring of moulding sand was carried out by physical agents (microwave radiation, temperature). On the basis of obtained results was shown that it is possible to restore the initial properties of the adhesive of BioCo2 binder. The initial properties of moulding sand can be achieved, after the cross-linking binders and after curing in the moulding sands with bioCo2 binder , by supplementing the moulding sand composition by the appropriate amount of water.