A Compact Steel Casting System for Mobile Foundry Public
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The United States Department of Defense desires to become net-zero in terms of energy, water, and waste. A WPI Research team collaborated with Army Research Labs (ARL) to create a compact steel casting system in pursuit of this sustainability initiative. Although this compact system is sustainable, it is also immobile and inefficiently configured. Our goal was to outfit this compact system into a safe and efficient dual shipping container system to be mobilized by the U.S. Army. We designed comprehensive 3D SolidWorks models that were directly imported into Ansys Workbench to analyze the hot air flow within the system. In Ansys, we used Spaceclaim, Mechanical, and Fluent to identify the ventilation inlets and outlets, generate a solvable mesh, and run the thermal simulations of our 3D models. Through analyzing the temperature distribution diagram outputs from Ansys Fluent and redesigning accordingly, we formulated a sufficient ventilation system capable of circulating up to 30 air exchanges and maintaining a safe average temperature of 250C within our mobile foundry. We designed a dual shipping container mobile foundry equipped with an internal heat resistant coating rated for temperatures between 3000F and 9000F, an external coat of white paint to absorb as little thermal energy in hot climates, a calcium chloride commercial desiccant for moisture and humidity control, and two explosion relief panels in each door rated for a 20 psf static pressure differential to dissipate energy in the event of an explosion. Our two-container system was configured to allocate one container for all melting and pouring processes, while the other container was allocated for 3D printing, preparation, and storage to isolate the hazardous exothermic components into one container. Conclusively, our mobile foundry design adds approximately $53,730.00 and sources an additional 8.86 kW per hour.
- This report represents the work of one or more WPI undergraduate students submitted to the faculty as evidence of completion of a degree requirement. WPI routinely publishes these reports on its website without editorial or peer review.
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