Application Of Refractories In Glass Industry


Refractories performance affects glass manufacture in the production cost and the quality of the glass. Refractories in different areas of a glass furnace suffer different operating environment. So different types of refractory are used in the different parts of the glass furnaces.

Crown Refractories

Crown of glass furnaces are subjected to long-term thermal attack and chemical corrosion due to alkali vapor. It also need to be heavily insulated to reduce the energy loss. So it requires volume stability, low permeability, low conductivity, and high refractoriness of refractories in this area.

Silica refractories are the preferred material for crown construction due to its affordability, low stoning potential, insulating capability, resistance to creep, low thermal expansion after 600°C and compatibility with the batch material. They have been used for the construction of glass melting furnace for over a century. Although today the use of silica bricks is restricted to crown and superstructure, the steady improvement in production of silica bricks has led to greater chemical purity and stricter dimensional tolerances over a wide range of shape and sizes. To meet the demanding requirement of oxygen-fuel furnaces, fused cast alumina block is used due to its excellent resistance against acid slag, chemical corrosion and alkali vapor.

Superstructure Refractories

The superstructure of the furnace will suffer from high temperature and chemical attacks by volatile products and dust which settle on the walls and attack refractory products characterized by a progressive wear of refractory in contact with the glass. Refractories in this part are required to have a high thermal shock resistance and corrosion and erosion resistance.Fused cast AZS block, Zirconia-Mullite brick and Mullite brick with high density, low porosity, good hot strength and good sag resistance are used in this area.

Bottom and Lower Side wall Refractories

In contact with melt glass, refractories in those areas suffer high Temperature, and glass corrosion. Chemical reactions also take place between refractories and molten glass, fluxing agents, and/or volatile components. Erosion can follow; washing away refractory grains after the original bond has dissolved. With a high refractoriness, high thermal resistance, a low reaction with melt glass, a very strong glass corrosion and vapour resistance, Zirconia-Mullite bricks and Fused Cast AZS are installed on the bottom or in direct contact with sidewalls.

Regenerator Refractories

These areas of the furnaces are subject to special intense aggression in the long campaigns because of the chemical reactions between refractory material and hot gas. A higher performance of the refractory and insulating material is required in these cases in order to attain better heat efficiency. A regenerator consists of a regenerator chamber in which a checker work (or just checkers) of refractory bricks has been stacked. Due to high stability, high thermal shock resistance, low thermal expansion, high refractoriness and the high resistance to basic slags, Magnesia bricks are normally used in the regenerator including area above checker work and crown. With a high alkali resistance and creep resistance, fireclay bricks are particularly suitable for the lower parts of regenerator.

Besides refractories mentioned above, insulating refractories with low conductivity and good mechanical strength are used to reduce heat loss in areas where abrasion and wear by aggressive slag and molten metal are not severe. The insulating materials can lead to savings in fuel cost and a more rapid heat-up. After the furnaces are installed, unshaped refractories such as special ramming &patching masses are used to repair some parts of the furnaces to extend the furnace’s life until the end of the campaign.

Sunrise is a refractory material supplier from China. The main products of Sunrise include fused cast AZS block, fused cast alumina block, mullite brick, zircon brick, alumina bubble brick, sillimanite brick, corundum brick, low porosity fireclay brick, high alumina brick, all kinds of glass furnace ramming masses, etc..

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