Carbon bonded Refractories binding systems: Technical, Economical and Environmental challenges

Reference Presenter Authors
14-028 Erwan Gueguen Gueguen, E.(RHI MAGNESITA); Hill, K.(RHI MAGNESITA); Cabral da Silva, S.L.(RHI MAGNESITA); Carbon containing Refractories are extensively used in Steelmaking applications in many different types of vessels like BOF, EAF and Ladles. The introduction of Carbon into the Refractory formulations brings various technical advantages leading to significantly increase the performance of the lining. Indeed, thanks to its non -wettability when in contact with slag and metal, carbon improves the corrosion resistance of the brick. Its high thermal conductivity helps dissipating the energy in the system hence enhancing the Thermal Shock Resistance of Refractories which is very important considering the thermal cycling conditions to which most of the steelmaking vessels are submitted. Nowadays there are two main Carbon based binding systems used in the Refractory industry: Pitch and derivatives, or Resin. Both systems have pro and cons and must be compared taking into account technical, economical as well as environmental arguments. Pitch based binding system have the advantage in that they transform into a structured graphite type of Carbon during heating process whereas Resin is transformed into an unstructured glassy type of Carbon. This leads to different behavior as far as Oxidation Resistance and Thermal Shock resistance in favor of Pitch based binding systems. The flexibility behavior of Pitch containing bricks can also be considered as a plus in comparison of the rigidity of Resin containing refractories at high Temperature. On the other hand , considering now the environmental aspects, Pitch is said to be more harmful due to its complex composition based on Poly-Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH’s). This contribution will deal with a comparison between both binding systems and will aim at listing some of the solutions which have already been proposed in order to overcome the technical, environmental and economical issues raised here above.
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