simulation software cuts energy use and waste generation in half
Argonne and Caterpillar (Peoria, Ill.) have developed the Casting
Process Simulator (CaPS) for use in Caterpillar's foundry processes.
Caterpillar used CaPS to perform more than 300 simulations of the
casting process for more than 70 parts. By using CaPS, Caterpillar
was able to improve the mold geometry to allow more rapid and uniform
filling by the molten metal. These improvements led to higher-quality
castings with extremely low rejection rates. In addition to quality
improvements, the new simulation program has provided environmental
benefits as well. Using the new simulation, Caterpillar can achieve
savings in raw materials used in the casting process. For example,
each ton of iron cast requires a ton of sand in the smelting process.
A large part of this sand mixture becomes a waste product that
is eventually sent to a landfill. Employing the CaPS simulation
has, for specific applications, allowed casting of two parts in
the same volume of mold where previously only one part could be
poured. This effectively cuts energy consumption and waste generation
in half for that part.
Using the Casting Process Simulator (CaPS), Caterpillar performed more than 300 simulations of the casting process for more than 70 of its parts. The company was able to improve the mold geometry to allow more rapid and uniform filling by the molten metal, as represented in these simulations. The improvements led to better castings and less waste generation.
Argonne's work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy's
Laboratory Technology Research Program, Office of Energy Research.
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For more information, contact Argonne's Technology Development and Commercialization