MTUS Technology of Ohio, USA has introduced an Automatic Argon Hook-Up System developed to automate the connection to the ladle for argon stirring. It can be used while the ladle is on the transfer car, or the ladle turret, or at ladle treatment stations and even in vacuum degassing tanks.

The robust design delivers the most rapid connection, minimising interruptions to gas purging and provides a cost effective and safer alternative to the traditional manual coupling process.

Designed to be used with single and dual plug ladles, the Automatic Argon Hook-Up System is mounted stationary or at a transit location, ready for automatic connection of the gas hose to the porous plug located on the ladle. After the ladle is placed near the coupling unit, it is activated and completes the gas connects to commence the stirring process. Each ladle has a funnel installed at the connector to aid a gastight connection. The spring-loaded suspension of the cylinder and the connection turret are engineered to facilitate large coupling tolerances, which compensate for small errors in the ladle positioning and locations, common in the meltshop. Additional benefits include, increased safety, efficiency, consistency and repeatability.