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INSTITUTE OF REFRACTORIES ENGINEERS NATIONAL CONFERENCE 2014 REVIEW Institute of Refractories Engineers N Refractories for En


The National Conference was held at the Kenwood Hall Hotel, Sheffield, on the 8th


represented by the speakers.


The Institute President Mr Keith Andrews provided an opening address, chaired the morning and afternoon sessions as well as the AGM.


In the morning session the first paper (Material Design for New Insulation Concepts) was presented by Dr Andreas Buhr of Almatis. Andus is known to many people in the refractory community and his presentations are always thought provoking. His presentation centred on a material which Almatis have described previously, however there have been further developments. Bonite (from Hibonite, calcium hexaluminate) is available in dense and very insulating grades and now a low density version LD. The compositional thermal conductivity values (k, W/mk) are 0.5, 1.5 – 1.0 (LD) and 1.7-2.5 for the dense material. These materials can be combined in various amounts to give castables optimum properties and with inherent stability to H2


and CO atmospheres; insulation and stability will be applicable to a wide range of refractory applications.


Dr Sankar Kannabiran of Hoganus Bjuf (Denmark) presented a paper on “Refractories for Wood Chip Furnaces”, which


are popular


throughout Scandinavia, Canada, Austria and Germany. This “biomass” combustion is considered CO2


of October. It was a truly European event with four nations


The refractory lining has to withstand a considerable amount of alkali attack. Permeability is the key criterion to refractory survival and Dr Kannibiran demonstrated the resistance of a 50% alumina material to K2


CO3 at 1100°C; it was poor, a new


development with control of the matrix permeability under the same conditions showed no disruption. SiC addition at 55- 60% addition levels can also contribute to alkali resistance and inherently resist ash build-up. Basic materials tend to absorb alkali salts; this results in bursting. There are other considerations; sulphur reactions with hydraulic materials and acid corrosion of the anchors as HCl is generated in the process.


An example of a wood chip furnace operating at around 1300°C creates steam for turbines generating 27MW.


Peter Trane of Skamol (Denmark) presented the third paper of the morning session “Acid Resistant Insulation Materials”. With the increasing use of alternative fuels in many processes combined with the combustion of waste streams containing high levels of plastic, the acid levels in the flue gasses have increased dramatically. To prevent corrosion of steel shells and other steel elements in plant construction, the dew point of acids (HCl, H2


SO4 neutral, it generates


around 480 million tonnes of ash assuming 7 billion tonnes


of consumption. WWW.IRENG.ORG NOVEMBER 2014 ISSUE & HNO3 the Skamol insulation.


Peter explained that the Skamol deposit of diatomite was a 50 million year old marine sediment comprising algae skeletons and a plastic clay; it is close to the surface with only a 2m overburden.


) can be calculated and thus contained within


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