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The Société Métallurgique de l'Escaut (SME) steelworks situated in Trith-Saint-Léger is equipped today with an electric furnace with a capacity of 75 tonnes, continuous casting on five lines and since 1989, an closed heated refinery. The electric furnace has the feature of being provided with current through three graphite electrodes (60 MW), the returning current is ensured via three water cooled electrodes allowing a 120 kA level of flow.
The choice of continuous current was initially motivated by the following expectations resulting from the experimental tests on a 6 t furnace at IRSID:
halving of electrode use;
removal of flicker phenomena;
noise reduction;
possible reduced consumption of energy and refractories.
After a particularly difficult year of inception, due to the resolution of electrical, thermal and refractory phenomena not experienced in the experimental furnace, this steelworks has progressed normally. Since 1987 the objectives of the project have all been progressively attained.

Additional information

Authors: VIGNERON A, Société Métallurgique de l'Escaut, Trith-Saint-Léger (FR);LEBRUN C, Société Métallurgique de l'Escaut, Trith-Saint-Léger (FR);THEBAULT J-M, Société Métallurgique de l'Escaut, Trith-Saint-Léger (FR)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 15506 FR (1996) 6pp., FS, ECU 7
Availability: Available from the (2)
ISBN: ISBN 92-827-5782-X
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