Tundish preheating

Electric solutions have never been more in demand – and word of their growing popularity has reached the metallurgy sector. When it comes to tundish preheating, electric heating solutions improve sustainability and energy efficiency, while minimizing material losses and interruptions.

In this age of climate awareness, making the switch to electric may seem like a no-brainer. However, there is a commonly held misconception that electric solutions cannot deliver high enough temperatures or sufficient power for effective tundish preheating. As Olivier Tanguy, Business Development Manager with Kanthal, explains, this skepticism is unfounded.

“Kanthal has been electrifying the world since 1931,” he says. “Our company was set up as a supplier of electric heating elements, and we have all the experience needed to make sure they deliver the necessary heat and power requirements.”


Kanthal’s electric heating systems can be adapted for all temperature ranges, delivering effective tundish preheating up to temperatures of 1,500 degrees Celsius (2,730 degrees Fahrenheit).

“Moreover, our products have been proven to deliver good ramp rates, bringing the tundish up to the required temperature in the right time,” Tanguy adds.

As for the sustainability benefits of using Kanthal’s high-temperature heating products for tundish preheating, the evidence speaks for itself.

Kanthal’s electric heating solutions produce no carbon emissions, provided the electricity they use is generated from a renewable energy source. Even when the source is a fossil-based power plant, the considerably reduced energy consumption of an electric heater leads to better resource efficiency overall. Electric heating solutions deliver more than 90 percent thermal efficiency and can cut energy use by up to 70 percent, depending on the process in which they are used.


CaptionOlivier Tanguy, Business Development Manager with KanthalIn a tundish, preheating is required, first to dry out the refractory material and prevent explosions that could occur if the molten metal were to come into contact with water vapor, and second to prevent the liquid metal from solidifying or freezing.

“If the metal were to freeze in the tundish it would have to be scrapped, resulting in material losses and interruptions in production,” Tanguy explains. “This can be prevented by making sure the temperature is high enough, as well as through better temperature control and temperature uniformity, especially in the thinner section of the tundish where the metal is poured out.”

Whereas gas heaters are very inefficient, delivering only 20 to 30 percent thermal efficiency while allowing a lot of heat to escape out of the exhaust, an electric heating system is up to 95 percent efficient. Since it is a closed system with built-in temperature controls, it also maintains a specific constant temperature. This results in a more controlled, more uniform and far more accurate heating process.


Last but certainly not least, electric solutions for tundish preheating are better for the operators and the overall working environment.

“Gas burners are notorious for being hot, noisy and polluting,” Tanguy says. “They also run the risk of emitting harmful nitrous oxides or even poisonous carbon monoxide gas. Kanthal’s electric solutions not only improve the bottom line of the business, but they are also quiet, safe and clean – making them a better solution all round.”

Five major benefits of electric tundish preheating

Electric tundish preheating is cleaner, more efficient and more sustainable, without compromising on power. Here are five key reasons to switch from gas to electric tundish preheating.

zero emissions_75.pngZero emissions

For companies seeking to reduce their carbon footprint, converting to electric is a no-brainer. Kanthal’s high-temperature heating products for tundish preheating produce zero carbon emissions, provided the electricity is generated from a renewable energy source. When using electricity from a fossil-based power plant, the enhanced efficiency of an electric heater can still produce fewer carbon emissions overall.

Better thermal efficiency_75.pngThermal efficiency of up to 95 percent

Whereas gas heaters allow significant amounts of energy to escape into the ambient air, an electric heater focuses the power where it needs to be. The average net efficiency of an electric tundish preheating system is up to 95 percent, compared with only 20 percent for a gas heater. This can result in an energy saving of up to 70 percent when converting from gas to electric.

Enhanced working environment_75.pngEnhanced working environment

An electric tundish heater contributes to a safer, cleaner working environment. Whereas gas burners are noisy and polluting, electric solutions are quiet, safe and clean. Besides eliminating the obvious safety risks posed by gas in the working environment, electric heaters produce no excess heat, harmful nitrous oxides or poisonous carbon monoxide.

Precise temperature control_75.pngPrecise temperature control

While gas heaters are not able to measure temperature, electric systems are equipped with thermal controls that enable a measurable, uniform heating process. Kanthal’s high-temperature heating products for tundish preheating have been proven to deliver good ramp rates, getting the tundish up to the required temperature in the right time.

regardless75px (1).pngEnergy-efficient heating, regardless of the temperature

Kanthal’s electric heating products deliver energy-efficient solutions for preheating tundishes, irrespective of the temperature requirement. Kanthal’s solutions are all specially designed for individual customer needs and have proven to be effective for tundish temperatures up to 1,500 degrees Celsius (2,730 degrees Fahrenheit).

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