A top-selling furnace weighing system from Aluminium Casthouse Technologies (ACT) is embracing the advance of Industry 4.0 with a major IT upgrade.

The BatchPilot, an innovative technology used in casthouses worldwide to accurately measure furnace liquid metal weight and determine exactly what is wanted aluminium and unwanted dross, is now installed with the latest Siemens S7 central processing unit and software for an even more accurate online process data logging and more user-friendly smart screens.

The upgrade of the Batchpilot system will, ultimately, allow customers to achieve greater gains in productivity, leading to even higher production levels at a time when the London Metal Exchange is rising sharply.

Managing director John Courtenay said:

“Knowing the correct weight of metal in the furnace is crucial to ensure slabs are consistently cast to the precise length ordered by the customer. The BatchPilot means casthouses don’t have to rely on visual estimates of furnace heel weight, which are notoriously unreliable, often leading to short casts, overfilling of the furnace or potentially restricting the number of slabs cast, all hugely wasteful.”

John Courtenay, Managing director

He continued

“Bringing an overall increase of more than 15% in production without the need to install new capacity, the system is an invaluable addition to the casthouse and this IT upgrade embraces the spirit of Industry 4.0, making operations even more efficient and improving the user experience.”

The BatchPilot uses unique technology for the accurate electronic measurement of furnace heel weights and transfer weights and is based on the principle of measuring changes in the furnace hydraulic cylinder pressure with furnace tilt angle. This allows precise measurement of furnace liquid metal weight, heel weight and dross build up.

As well as the BatchPilot, ACT provides the aluminium industry with a range of well-established casthouse products including Refinal fused fluxes and Casiflux environmentally-friendly launder coatings, together with comprehensive back-up support through distributors, agents and technical personnel.

For more information, visit www.actltd.com