CODEL VCEM5100 Flow Monitor Finds its Place in EAF Steel Mills


CODEL VCEM5100 Flow Monitor Finds its Place in EAF Steel Mills

Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) Steel Mills present many challenges when it comes to monitoring exhaust gases from the furnace outlet.  The process is extremely dusty and hot and in no way suitable for most in-situ type measurement instruments.  Measuring exhaust gas flow can be invaluable for process control and sometimes a necessary requirement for emissions monitoring system compliance.

Two EAF mill sites have solved their flow monitoring requirements with the CODEL VCEM5100 Infrared Continuous Flow Monitoring System.

In the Midwest United States, a plant was challenged with finding a flow monitoring systems for measuring flow on their mini-mill electric arc furnace ducts (two of them).  The temperatures range from 300° to 700° degrees Fahrenheit and the particulate loading is heavy.  Because the two furnaces blend into a common stack, measuring back in the ducts was required, and the flow monitoring system needed to be used as part of their CEMS.  This was possible with the VCEM5100 being certifiable to US EPA 40CFR part 75 regulations. 

In another plant in the Southwest United States a steel mill wanted to measure flow and oxygen to optimize their electric arc furnace.  This measurement is made in the direct exhaust (in the hot gas offtake) which runs in excess of 1000° Fahrenheit.  While the exhaust gas is dry, it’s extremely dusty.  The VCEM5100 is not only able to accommodate this environment, but the very high heat and turbulent dust help its ability to accurately measure flow.

While there are other flow monitoring system technologies available on the market, only the VCEM5100 could meet these two demanding applications.  Both S-type Pitot and Ultrasonic flow monitoring systems would not work in the high dust conditions found in these exhaust streams.  The pitot tube would get plugged too quickly and the ultrasonic could not attain a signal reading through the dust.

So why does the VCEM5100 do what other flow monitoring systems cannot do?  The answer is in the measurement technology.  The VCEM 5100 measures the velocity of stack gases using a highly accurate time of flight measurement that is derived from a cross-correlation analysis of the infra-red emissions of the turbulent gas.

Two robust infrared detectors are used for the prime sensing, mounted on the stack or duct typically one meter apart in the direction of flow.  High-efficiency air curtains are fitted to considerably extend the time between maintenance periods and window cleaning (typically 1 year).

The total release is then calculated as follows:

Mass flow = Mass concentration x Gas velocity x Area of Duct

The method used is similar in principle to the technique of flow measurement by the injection of chemical dye or radioactive tracers, where the velocity is derived from the transport time of the tracer between two measuring points a known distance apart.  Instead of an artificial tracer being added, the naturally occurring turbulence of the gas stream is used as the tracer.

The VCEM5100 is ideal for use in Electric Arc Furnace Mills…

Stands up to high heat: with the transmitter and receiver mounted on the outside of a stack or duct, the high exhaust gas temperature limit of the VCEM5100 is in excess of 1832°F.  An exhaust gas temperature of 158°F is the minimum required to create enough IR signal to generate a signal.

Stands up to high dust: Because it uses the IR temperature of moving particles, and measures on a straight plane (versus cross stack or duct), the VCEM5100 has no problem working in high dust applications where other instruments could clog or have signals blocked.

EPA Certification Ready:  The VCEM5100 is a certifiable flow monitoring system that can be used as a stand-alone instrument or in conjunction with a CEMS (Continuous Emissions Monitoring System) where mass emissions are required to be measured and reported.  To meet the requirements, the VCEM5100 is equipped with full high and low span automated calibration checks.

Extremely low Maintenance Requirements: with the VCEM5100 not in direct contact with the exhaust gas, maintenance is minimized to simple window cleaning once a year.  Purge air connections allow the lenses to be kept clean between maintenance intervals.  No moving components increases reliability even more.

The VCEM5100 works in a lot more applications besides EAF steel mills.  Anywhere where a flow monitoring system is challenged due to high temperature or dust loading is likely a great candidate for the VCEM5100.

Monitoring Solutions is proud to be the exclusive distributor of CODEL products in the United States.  Besides the VCEM5100 we offer other CODEL products for process control:

EnergyTech 101: a low-cost non-compliance opacity monitoring system perfect for process measurement of opacity where compliance is not required.


CODEL EnergyTech 101/102 Non-Compliance Opacity Monitor

EnergyTech 201/202: a Carbon Monoxide measurement system for coal mills and coal handling applications.


CODEL EnergyTech 201/202 Carbon Monoxide (CO) Analyzers

EnergyTech 301: a cost-effective tribo-electric dust monitoring device perfect for baghouse breakthrough measurement.


CODEL EnergyTech 301 Triboelectric Dust Monitoring

EnergyTech 401: a cross duct Carbon Monoxide Analyzer suitable for large/dirty processes.


CODEL ET 401 Cross Duct Carbon Monoxide (CO) Analyzers

GCEM40: Low cost, relatively maintenance-free analyzer for continuous process and emissions monitoring of CO, NO, NO2, NOx, SO2, CH4, CO2 and H2O.


CODEL GCEM 40 In-Situ Analyzer


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