The development of on-line control devices has contributed to the improvement of all continuous chemical process operations by improving productivity, reducing energy consumption and limiting losses. However, on-line continuous sensors suitable for high temperature metallurgical processes have been less well developed other than a few notable exceptions such as oxygen in steel sensors. In high temperature melts using conventional analytical techniques, the composition of the melt may still change whilst awaiting the analytical result, so continuous analysis is preferable to batch analysis. On-line sensors can easily be interfaced with other measurement and analytical devices such as gas analysers, to provide total process information and control. In addition on-line techniques, using solid electrolytes, give an analysis of the active species, whereas conventional analysis invariably gives the active species together with the element on any inclusions.
The project proposes to build on the success of previous EC programmes through a consortia of five major metal producers, an advanced materials supply company, two SMEs one of which is an electronics company and the other a galvaniser, two research organisations and a university. The aims of the project are:
a) To improve process control in the zinc, copper and electronic industry through the use of high temperature solid sensors.
b) To identify and create new solid electrolyte sensors for the determination of selenium and bismuth in copper, and lanthanum, aluminium and cerium in zinc for specialist galvanising.
c) To improve the life time of solid state sensors in high temperature melts.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
932 81 Skelleftehamn
BS11 8HT Bristol
OX5 1PF Oxford
SG8 7QP Royston
BS99 7NT Bristol