Corrotherm International – Ever increasing struggle for performance and productivity
Now as never before there is an ever increasing struggle for performance and productivity. Globalisation has meant that the pressures on improving competitiveness are more urgent now than any time in the past .This in turn has driven the introduction of lean and six sigma principles in manufacturing worldwide.
In addition to this company boards are acutely aware of their corporate social responsibilities and the risk register is pored over at most large company Board meetings. This has led to demands for equipment suppliers and contractors to guarantee no failures in service and minimal environmental impact.
Down the line these circumstances have combined to increase the specification of high grade materials in all areas of industrial process equipment.
At the top of the high grade metals tree sits a range of nickel alloys that are used in the most aggressive of applications and in some cases there is no substitute for the use of nickel alloys in critical areas. Nickel has been used as an alloying element for over 2000 years , but it was in the 1940’s that Nimonic alloys were developed in the UK , which enabled the first jet engines to be built. Since then a huge range of superalloys have been developed ,. The applications for these alloys is vast and ranges from the automotive to aerospace , oil and gas , marine , power generation , waste control , electrical components and communications.
More recently variations in existing grades and some completely new grades have been developed for specific applications. One of the newer grades onto the market is Incoloy® 945 and 945X , which is set to replace the use of Inconel® 718 in well head equipment because of its equal performance , but is lower cost and is easier to machine . Inconel 690 and 693 were originally developed for resistance to metals dusting specifically for use in reformers in Gas to Liquids plants, but are now being use more and more often in the mining and oil industries.
10 Years ago Inconel® 625 was rarely specified , despite its excellent corrosion resistance and performance at high temperatures . More often Incoloy®825was more often used . Since the recent exploitation of more and more sour gas deposits and deeper working in oil extraction , plus the demands of operators already mentioned ,Inconel ®625 is now commonly used , making it cheaper and more widely available.
The trend is set to continue with other super alloys , giving designers more choice an in turn leading to better performing equipment in the struggle for increased productivity and competitiveness
For more information on Nickel Alloys visit our website: www.corrotherm.co.uk
Inconel® and Incoloy® are registered trade marks of Special Metals Corp.