A major steel foundry approached ATI to help with a major time waster. Part of the steel production process requires that the molten steel be injected with various gasses to establish the specific chemical composite of the particular alloy of steel. This operation is performed in a refractory vessel, a cylindrical chamber about 16 feet high lined with bricks to accommodate the intense heat of the process. Due to the harsh environment, these bricks deteriorate and have to be replaced periodically.
The old process involved starting at the bottom of the vessel and re-bricking the entire vessel, erecting scaffolding along the way as the height grew out of reach of the crew. This cost many days and man-hours of down time to erect the scaffolding, lay the bricks, and then break down the scaffolding to resume operation.
ATI provided a heavy-duty Double Scissors Lift table custom-designed specifically for this application. The lift supported a capacity of 15,000 pounds, enough for a whole crew and over 6 tons of bricks. It is equipped with safety holding valves to prevent lowering of the platform in the event of a hydraulic failure, a requirement for operators to be able to stand on the lift. It has a circular platform top allowing the crew maximum access around the entire inside circumference of the vessel.
Now when the time comes to re-brick the refractory vessel, the crew gets started at the bottom with the first few layers, once they get up to about 4 feet high, they leave the chamber and drop the lift in with an overhead crane. This takes only a few minutes and they are back to work, only now they can simply push a button every time they need to increase their working height, saving countless hours every single time this process takes place.
Air Technical Industries is always willing and able to tack unique and interesting projects like this and provide custom solutions for every day handling challenges, or the most unusual ones. They offer robust, functional equipment that can get the job done. After working over 10 years in this harsh and demanding application, this customer was able to call on ATI once again to build another one!