Ashland-Sudchemie-Kernfest GmbH (ASK Chemicals) has completed a new technology center in Hilden, Germany, which includes a complete mini-foundry. A melting furnace was the final component installed, giving ASK metalcasting capabilities that range from hot and cold coremaking, coating assembled cores, No-Bake resin moldmaking, aluminium and iron melting, inoculation and casting. Shot-blasting equipment was installed for fettling the castings produced there.
“With the new technology center we will be able to systematically and in a structured way expand our knowledge about the processes taking place during coremaking, and how they interact with downstream processes,” stated ASK Chemicals managing director Dr. Thomas Oehmichen.
ASK Chemicals is a joint venture of Ashland Casting Solutions and Sud-Chemie AG, a specialty chemicals company. The venture produces resin binders, hardeners, and coating for coremaking, coating, molding, and mold assembly, as well as metallurgical products for iron casting.
With the completion of the mini foundry, ASK indicates it can simulate and optimize foundry processes “under near-reality conditions” without disrupting customers’ production processes.
In addition, the foundry will work with machinery manufacturers to develop new products and corresponding machinery, coordinating the consumables and the equipment to gain more understanding of the processes and the chemical reactions taking place in metalcasting operations.
“We look forward to doing this together with our customers, with the objective of developing better products in a shorter time,” Oehmichen added. “Especially in Europe – but also in other parts of the world – the issue of ‘reduced emissions and sustainable production’ will gain in importance. Dedicated development of ecologically reasonable systems will be an essential precondition for maintaining Germany as a foundry industry location in the long run. With the construction of the technology centre, ASK has taken another important step towards this end.”