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Vacuum Induction Melting

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Vacuum Induction Melting
Click number:- Release time:2017-05-19

Vacuum induction melting (VIM) utilizes electric currents to melt metal within a vacuum. The first prototype was developed in 1920. One of the only ways to induce a current within a conductor is through electromagnetic induction. Electromagnetic induction induces eddy currents within conductors by changing the magnetic field. Eddy currents create heating effects to melt the metal. Vacuum induction melting has been used in both the aerospace and nuclear industries.


The process was invented in Hanau, Germany in 1917. Heraeus Vacuumschmelze and Dr. Wilhelm Rohn applied for a patent on vacuum melting on 12 January 1918 and were granted a German patent DE 345161. E.F. Northrup built the first prototype of a vacuum induction furnace in the United States of America in 1920. Medium frequency furnaces were seen soon afterwards in England and Sweden in 1927. The process was initially developed to refine certain special metals such as cobalt and nickel. As these metals and alloys became more common, the process of VIM became more widely used. VIM now helps to melt a variety of metals for aircraft and nuclear applications. 


Vacuum induction melting uses currents within a vacuum to melt metal. VIM involves placing a core-less induction furnace into a vacuum chamber. The heat used to start the melting process comes from an induced current called an eddy current. The melting and casting operations are then carried out at low pressures to control the entire alloy chemistry process.