Tochinvest Zinc, a leading manufacturer of steel parts in Russia, has completed installation of an eco-friendly hot-dip galvanizing furnace. The new furnace can galvanize components at a rate of up to 15t/h.

If a three-shift schedule is operated and assuming 250 days a year on-line it will be able to produce around 80kt/y of galvanised product.

The recently built furnace supplied by Zink Körner of Hagen, Germany features flat flame burners of the FL 20/50 type, which Körner developed specifically for batch galvanizing. These burners use natural gas as fuel, which is available at a relatively moderate cost in Russia. Their design allows them to provide the same heating as was previously only achievable by electrically heated furnaces. The burners have an efficiency rate of 75% and unlike burners commonly used in the past, they operate in a modulating mode that makes them infinitely adjustable within a range of 1:10.

Diffuser plates mounted on the burners direct the gas flow along the inner furnace wall, which produces a combination of radiant and convective heat. This has the positive effect of a high input of heat into the liquid zinc at relatively low furnace temperatures. Throughout furnace operation, the output of the burners is infinitely adjusted to the throughput of the furnace, thus the temperature drop in the zinc bath caused by the dipping of a new batch is minimised. Another positive feature is that the furnace always consumes just the amount of energy needed. This regulating mode also avoids abrupt temperature changes, which would otherwise cause strain in the galvanizing tank structure.