Induction Heating For Industrial Applications

An induction melting furnace uses “induction” heating or induction melting (the name derives from heating metals or other electrically conductive materials in order to “induce” a current in that material. The actually heating comes from the resulting friction) that will melt metal. The melting point for steel is 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit. Other melted metals include copper, aluminum, iron, and some precious metals. For the production of specialty steels and alloys, induction heating is done in a vacuum because if the material is subjected to air oxidation would occur.

Induction Melting Furnace

Due to the use of electrically conductive materials, induction involves an electric current, which produces a magnetic field. The magnetic field will flow in the direction of an alternating current. For example, there will be a magnetic field change of direction 60 times per second when the alternating current is 60 Hertz (Hz).

What’s The Difference Between Induction Heating And Other Methods?

There are other heating methods. For example, gas furnace and electric furnace heating are methods used instead of the induction method. Salt baths are even used for heating. These other methods all depend upon heat transfer from an outside source, whereas induction heating is from “within.”

Induction Melting Furnace Applications

The place, the workshop, where the heating and casting of metals occurs is called a foundry. The process of heating metals in an induction melting furnace allows for surface hardening, brazing, melting, and soldering. Induction heating can be used for graphite crucibles. Induction heating is often used for the heating of silicon components and semiconductors. Induction heating is also used in other industrial applications outside of information technology.

Induction Welding

Induction welding is a similar process using plastics. Tube seaming is a function of induction welding. Electrical current run through plastic tubes heats the material so that the seams are cauterized or welded together.

Radio Frequency (RF) Ranges

Different radio frequencies ranges are used for different applications.

  • 5-30 kilohertz (kHz) are used for thick materials, such as steel with a 50mm or greater diameter.
  • 100-400 kHz are for shallow penetration, such as steel pieces of 5-10mm.
  • 480 kHz is used on microscopic pieces.

Induction heating equipment, such as induction melting furnaces are used in several industries, especially by high-tech and industrial manufacturers.

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