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Numerical simulation and process optimization of an aluminum holding furnace based on response surface methodology and uniform design

Publication date: Available online 13 June 2014
Author(s): Ji-min Wang , Shen Lan , Wen-ke Li
It is indispensable for strengthening smelting process and controlling fine to understand metallurgical behaviors and mechanism of production process of aluminum holding furnaces. A CFD (computational fluid dynamics) compressive process model was developed and integrated with energy distribution regime using user subroutines based on FLUENT code. Integrated intelligence ideas with a combination of response surface methodology and uniform design was employed to quantitatively achieve the inherent laws of thermal characteristics and mechanism behind various factors. The optimal scheme obtained from the compromise of the two desirable responses was as follows: flue position of same side, oxidant type of pure oxygen, air preheated temperature of 719 K, natural gas velocity of 108.88 m/s, burner height of 1150 mm, vertical burner angle of 5°, pool depth of 625 mm, horizontal spacing between burners of 2050 mm, height-radius ratio of 0.6, air–fuel ratio of 1.04, and burner load ratio of 1:1. The maximal end aluminum temperature uniform coefficient of 12.85% and minimal energy consumption per ton of aluminum of 0.01092 kg ce/t-Al were obtained. Confirmed experiments demonstrated that such a combination of the CFD, RSM (response surface methodology) and UD (uniform design) is a powerful and useful approach for process optimization of aluminum holding furnaces.

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