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Analysis of Sensor-Lance Samples for Basic Oxygen Furnace Control

Volume 34, Number 4 (Aug. 1980) Page 447-452

Linde, T.R.

As part of a new basic oxygen furnace (BOF) steelmaking control system, procedures were developed for rapidly handling and accurately analyzing steel samples taken with a sensor-lance from an upright vessel. Determinations must be: (1) accurate to control the steelmaking process and assure that the heats are made to specifications, and (2) rapid to reduce BOF turnabout time and thus provide the potential to increase productivity. A pneumatic tube carrier was developed to safely transport hot (2200°F) lance samples to the laboratory. The samples are cut and cooled simultaneously on a high-speed abrasive cutoff machine equipped with a specially designed sample clamp and a high-volume water cooling system. Initially, the analytical performance was not as good as that obtained from conventional cast disk samples. Analysis deviations were traced to large slag-type sulfur-bearing inclusions in the lance samples. Accurate analyses were then obtained by increasing the spectrometer preburn time from 3 to 15 s. More than 1000 trial heats have been made. The procedures we developed permit hot samples to be removed from the lance sampler, sent to the laboratory, analyzed, and reported in about 3 minutes.