The foundry industry is suffering under sharp price rises for both feedstock materials and energy. In recent years, Cupola furnace operators have had to absorb a steep increase in the price of foundry coke and have also been faced with serious supply bottlenecks. That makes the search for fuels that could replace foundry coke more pressing than ever. One potential substitute is petroleum coke dust, since it is well suited in technical terms and interesting from the cost viewpoint. It can be blown, together with oxygen, into the smelting zone. VVG has concluded with DAKO GmbH (Link), a petroleum coke dust supplier, an exclusive sales agreement for the foundry industry in Germany. Trial operations are currently in progress at a Foundry in the south of Germany. They are to run for twelve months. There the technical and economic advantages of using petroleum coke dust in cupola furnaces are to be explored. It is possible to tour this test facility to get a first-hand idea about the unit. An appointment should be arranged in advance.
Based only on the data collected to date, one may assume that petroleum coal dust can be substituted for about 15% of the foundry coke used. The costs for petroleum coal dust are currently about half of those for foundy coke. The savings potentials are so great that, even for the operators of smaller furnaces, the investment in the necessary infrastructure (silos, compressors, injection lines, lances, regulation technology etc.) will quickly pay for itself. Over and above that, VVG offers a number of different financing options that practically eliminate the risks usually involved with investment.