Ingot Casting Steel Foundations
Ingot casting is a system in which ingot molds are filled with liquid steel, then solidified.
Prior to the development of continuous casting technology, ingot casting was the standard process to cast liquid steel into slabs, blooms, and billets. Liquid steel was poured into molds standing on flat railroad cars until they solidified. The cast blocks, called ingots, were removed from the molds then reheated or “soaked” in soaking pits until a consistent temperature was achieved through the ingot’s cross-section. After reheating, the ingots were rolled into semi-finished products by the slabbing or blooming mills. Presently, ingot casting is done to produce blocks for the forging industry.
The current ingot casting process involves a bottom-pour system in which the ingot molds are filled from the bottom of the molds to the top to limit the exposure of the steel to the atmosphere which maintains the steel quality. The steel ladle pours the molten steel through a slide-gate system in the bottom of the ladle into the trumpet of the bottom-pour stand. The steel flows down into a distribution spider and up into the individual ingot molds. Once solidified, the ingots are removed from the molds and reheated for the forging process.