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WORLD OF INDUSTRIES - MOTION, DRIVE & AUTOMATION 5/2017

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WORLD OF INDUSTRIES - MOTION, DRIVE & AUTOMATION 5/2017

Disengaging torque

Disengaging torque limiters help reduce heavy duty damages in steel mills MACHINE ELEMENTS In the steel rolling mills of Arcelor Mittal Ostrava, the largest steel producer in the Czech Republic, clutches with high performance densities as well as high torques and speeds ensure the highest level of operational safety and maximum productivity. With an annual production volume of nearly 3 million tonnes of steel and more than 7,500 employees, Arcelor Mittal Ostrava (AMO) is the largest steel producer in the Czech Republic and is a significant part of the largest steel and mining company in the world, Arcelor Mittal. The construction industry and engineering sectors are amongst the most significant customers for this steel, which is produced both in Ostrava and at several production locations in the Czech Republic. In steel production – after the molten steel from the furnaces has been moulded into sheets, slabs, blocks or staves, these primary raw parts are then further processed in rolling mills and transformed into finished steel products. In order to protect the motors, transmissions and other drive components in the mill permanently against expensive overload damage, AMO relies on the ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiters by Mayr power transmission. These robust and resilient disengaging clutches are able to limit the dangerously high torques, and can easily withstand the rough conditions in the steel production set-up. They help to save on materials, manpower and costs, and in turn increase the productivity in the rolling mills. Protection against heavy duty damages The ever increasing need and demand for higher levels of productivity in industrial environment requires maximum performance from the steel rolling mills; and during the operations, occurrence of overload cannot be completely avoided. Overload occurs in mills, for example, due to varying material consistencies in the steel, depending on the temperature and its associated problems in the rolling process:If the material is not hot enough and therefore not soft enough, it will impact the rollers, for example. Often, one single case of overload damage is much more expensive than a torque limiter. An investment in a clutch is therefore significantly small compared to the costs of damages in transmissions, drive units, the material costs, or the production downtime. Therefore, AMO employs the ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiting clutches in its mills, which reliably protect the drive line against damages. These clutches are positioned between the motor and the transmission, and limit the torque accurately to a set value: The maximum torque is 170,000 Nm, and the maximum speed is 400 rpm. Protection at extremely high torques Thomas Gebler, the Regional sales manager for Mayr power transmission explains, “The disengaging ‘Eas-HT’ clutches are element clutches which represent the ideal solution for extremely high torques and speeds or large mass moments of inertia. These clutches are based on individual overload elements which are integrated into the flanges. The achievable torque results from the pre-tension force of the elements multiplied by the number of elements and the radius at which the individual elements are arranged.” Due to their modular concept, the clutches can be tailored to respective applications, and also control far higher torques than the usual central disengaging mechanism. Up until now, the company has supplied torque limiters with a torque of 540,000 Nm. However, the limit of what is possible has not yet been reached: Thanks to the modular construction, torque limiters with torques of several million Newton metres are also possible. Operation during overload conditions While in operation, the individual overload elements on the ‘Eas-HT’ element clutches, transmit the torque through positive locking. In case of overload, the input and output are disconnected and have almost zero residual torque within a fraction of a second, with high switch-off and repetitive accuracies. Only WORLD OF INDUSTRIESMOTION, DRIVE & AUTOMATION 5/2017

Torque limiters are an indispensable component in rolling mills in order to achieve high productivity and prevent downtimes caused by overload damage 01 The ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiters from Mayr power transmission ensure the destruction-free limitation of dangerously high torques, and can easily withstand the rough conditions in steel production 02 The disengaging ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiters operate with precision and are immediately ready for operation again, after rectifying the causes of overload the friction of the pressure flange bearing takes effect. The kinetic energy of the rotating mass stored in the system slows down freely. The element clutches remain disengaged until they are simply and quickly re-engaged manually or using pneumatic, hydraulic, mechanical or electro-mechanical devices. In cases of overload, after a disengagement these clutches can cope with long slowdown times for the drive. When defining the permissible slowdown times, only the robustness of the clutch bearing is to be considered. Nevertheless, after a clutch disengagement, it is expedient to switch off and shutdown the drive without delay. An overload signal can be provided by a speed monitoring system or a contactless limit switch, which permanently monitors the operating state of the clutch. As a result of the complete disconnection of the input and output, no engagement impacts occur during the over-travel time which could have a negative effect on the drive line. in our systems”, says Karel Satke. “Since then, there have been no more premature disengagements. The clutches disengage exactly when we require it, and as a result, we have been able to reduce our downtimes by more than 80 %. Re-engagement is also much easier and quicker too”. Prior to each clutch leaving Mayr’s factory in Mauerstetten, it is extensively tested and set exactly to the required value. For this purpose, the company has diverse and modern testing equipment; it can also call on decades of experience in development and design. An electronic database in which the measurement values are stored together with the associated serial numbers of a product, ensures100 % traceability. Photographs: Chr. Mayr GmbH + Co. KG www.mayr.com Reducing downtimes, increasing productivity Karel Satke, the Head of Mechanical maintenance at Arcelor Mittal Ostrava explains how the ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiters are also used in AMO’s mills as a replacement for shear pin couplings as well: “The element clutches are designed so that they can replace the shear pin coupling 1:1 in the available short installation spaces. No changes had to be made to our application”. The disengaging ‘Eas-HT’ torque limiters operate with much greater precision than the shear pin couplings, and are immediately ready for operation again after rectification of the overload cause. Shear pin couplings, on the other hand, have a pre-defined breaking point (shear pin) which breaks in case of overload and therefore prevents damage occurring to the other components. However, the destroyed components then have to be replaced. This generates costs and downtimes for the system. Furthermore, the trigger torque is afflicted with relatively high tolerances: The shear pin couplings lose transmittable torque over time, as the shear pins suffer fatigue and therefore frequently disconnect too quickly, which in turn leads to unnecessary downtimes. “The ‘Eas-HT’ element clutches have already proved their worth for one year About Mayr Power Transmission The family-owned company, Mayr power transmission, founded in 1897, is a leading manufacturer of safety brakes, torque limiters and shaft couplings. These products are primarily used for electrically powered machines in filling plants, machine tools, packaging machines as well as in elevators, wind power plants, in stage technology and industrial robotics. Approximately 600 employees currently work in the Allgäu-based Headquarters in Mauerstetten, Germany. Mayr power transmission has over 1 000 employees worldwide. The company is globally established with plants in Poland and China, sales subsidiaries in the USA, France, Great Britain, Italy, Singapore and Switzerland and with representatives in 36 other countries. WORLD OF INDUSTRIESMOTION, DRIVE & AUTOMATION 5/2017

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