UK-based Edwards, a leading manufacturer of vacuum products and abatement systems, has recently installed a modular steel degassing system at an undisclosed steel plant in Italy.

The system replaces an existing steam ejector system.

Edwards cannot name the Italian steelmaker, which makes 1.5Mt/yr of steel for the automotive and power industry, has six of Edwards’ mechanical degassing units already installed on site. The company in question chose the Edwards system because of its modular nature, which means ease of installation and integration, claims Edwards.

A mechanical degassing system does not require the operator to allow for heating up time (which is the case for steam ejectors, Edwards claims). This means increased productivity, reliability and consistency, according to the company.

Edwards claims to have the largest installed base of dry pumps in the global steel industry. Alessandro Vila, Edwards’ European sales manager, said that steel plants are increasingly eager to replace energy-consuming steel ejectors with more efficient systems, adding that mechanical vacuum systems are ‘almost standard in vacuum degassing’ these days.

The Edwards system relies upon multi-stage mechanical boosters supported by dry screw primary vacuum pumps. “Lower running costs, higher pumping speeds, predictable maintenance and lower environmental impact all lend weight to the case for mechanical dry pumps,” the company claims.

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