A preliminary investigation of surface hardening of steel and iron by solar energy
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Conservation of energy is now a world-wide problem. Because heat treatment of metals consumes a great deal of energy, the utilization of high temperature solar furnaces for surface hardening of steel and iron is of importance for the saving of energy.
The rapid attainment of an austenitizing temperature by the concentration of heat energy at the focal point will raise the surface hardness of a high carbon steel or low alloy steel specimen to a hardness Hv about 1000 kg /mm2, after the heat source is interrupted by selfquenching. Times of heating vary from a fraction of a second to a few seconds, depending upon the solar radiant intensity.
Experiments were conducted first as “singlespot hardening”, then, “closely spaced multiplespot hardening” and “line to line scanning hardening” for large area on a specimen. Small tools and small machine parts so treated provided encouraging results. This method of surface hardening opens up a new method of heat treatment which is energy efficient.
KeywordsHeating Time Nodular Cast Iron Surface Hardening High Carbon Steel Hardness Distribution
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