The Prefil®-Footprinter measures the relative cleanliness of an aluminum melt by comparison with a benchmark inclusion level for a given alloy, a production process or a given stage in the process.
The system is based on the filtration of a liquid aluminum sample through a fine porous ceramic filter under strict conditions.
The result of the test is a curve plot of the weight of metal filtered as a function of time. The result is seen directly on a computer screen integrated in the cabinet.
Optionally, the metal residue of the test can be saved and sent to ABB for metallographic analysis. This complementary analysis provides numbers and identification of inclusions.
A ready-to-use crucible equipped with a porous filter disc at the bottom is first pre-heated and is installed in a pressure chamber. The operator then takes a sample of liquid metal with a ladle, pours it in the crucible, closes the pressure chamber and starts the test.
The system applies pressure in the chamber when the metal temperature reaches the specified value for the test, forcing the liquid metal to flow through the porous filter disc.
Building a database allows to determine the variation of metal cleanliness found at a specific location. The database is used as a comparison or reference, thus providing a footprint of the process. The results for metal tested at the same location can be judged against the pre-established benchmark as a shop floor quality control.
At the start-up of a test, the Prefil® software displays this benchmark on the computer screen. As the metal falls in a weigh ladle, the filtration rate is measured and the curve graphed on top of the benchmark.
Prefil® Database Software
The software allows you to build a database of benchmarks and perform live statistical analysis with whatever number of curves you wish to display on the screen, generate reports, and access the database on a system network.
You have the possibility to define curve information according to plant, alloy, location, furnace, filter, operator, practice, date, time, etc. The possibilities are almost unlimited and the information is easy to retrieve.