Flow and thermal behavior of the top surface flux/powder layers in continuous casting molds

R. M. McDavid, B. G. Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Steady-state finite-element models have been formulated to investigate the coupled fluid flow and thermal behavior of the top-surface flux layers in continuous casting of steel slabs. The three-dimensional (3-D) FIDAP model includes the shear stresses imposed on the flux/steel interface by flow velocities calculated in the molten steel pool. It also includes different temperature-dependent powder properties for solidification and melting. Good agreement between the 3-D model and experimental measurements was obtained. The shear forces, imposed by the steel surface motion toward the submerged entry nozzle (SEN), create a large recirculation zone in the liquid flux pool. Its depth increases with increasing casting speed, increasing liquid flux conductivity, and decreasing flux viscosity. For typical conditions, this zone contains almost 4 kg of flux, which contributes to an average residence time of about 2 minutes. Additionally, because the shear forces produced by the narrowface consumption and the steel flow oppose each other, the flow in the liquid flux layer separates at a location centered 200 mm from the narrowface wall. This flow separation depletes the liquid flux pool at this location and may contribute to generically poor feeding of the mold-strand gap there. As a further consequence, a relatively cold spot develops at the wideface mold wall near the separation point. This nonuniformity in the temperature distribution may result in nonuniform heat removal, and possibly nonuniform initial shell growth in the meniscus region along the wideface off-corner region. In this way, potential steel quality problems may be linked to flow in the liquid flux pool.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)672-685
Number of pages14
JournalMetallurgical and Materials Transactions B: Process Metallurgy and Materials Processing Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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