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Heating Defects and Preventive Measures of Seamless Steel Tube Billets

Date:2022-09-16    keywords: heating defects, seamless steel tube billets
The production of hot-rolled seamless steel tubes generally requires two heatings from the billet to the finished steel pipe, that is, the heating before the piercing of the billet and the reheating of the blank pipe after rolling before sizing. When producing cold-rolled steel pipes, intermediate annealing is required to eliminate the residual stress of the steel pipes. Although the purpose of each heating is different, the heating furnace may also be different, but if the process parameters and heating control of each heating are improper, the tube blank (steel tube) will have heating defects and affect the quality of the steel tube.



seamless steel tube billets


The purpose of heating the tube blank before perforation is to improve the plasticity of the steel, reduce the deformation resistance of the steel, and provide a good metallographic structure for the rolled tube. The heating furnaces used are annular heating furnaces, walking heating furnaces, inclined bottom heating furnaces and car bottom heating furnaces.


The purpose of reheating the waste pipe before sizing is to increase and homogenize the temperature of the waste pipe, improve the plasticity, control the metallographic structure, and ensure the mechanical properties of the steel pipe. Heating furnaces mainly include walking reheating furnaces, continuous roller hearth reheating furnaces, inclined hearth reheating furnaces and electric induction reheating furnaces. The purpose of the annealing heat treatment of the steel pipe during the cold rolling process is to eliminate the work hardening phenomenon caused by the cold working of the steel pipe, reduce the deformation resistance of the steel, and create conditions for the continued processing of the steel pipe. The heating furnaces used in annealing heat treatment mainly include walking furnaces, continuous roller hearth furnaces and car hearth furnaces.

Common defects in tube blank heating are: uneven heating of tube blank (steel pipe) (commonly known as yin and yang surfaces), oxidation, decarburization, heating cracks, overheating and overburning, etc.

The main factors affecting the heating quality of the tube blank: heating temperature, heating speed, heating and holding time, and furnace atmosphere.

Tube blank heating temperature:

The main manifestation is that the temperature is too low or too high, or the heating temperature is not uniform. If the temperature is too low, it will increase the deformation resistance of the steel and reduce the plasticity. Especially when the heating temperature cannot ensure that the metallographic structure of the steel is completely transformed into austenite grains, the tendency of cracks to occur in the tube blank during the hot rolling process will increase. When the temperature is too high, serious oxidation, decarburization and even overheating or overburning will occur on the surface of the tube blank.

Tube blank heating speed:

The heating speed of the tube blank is closely related to the generation of heating cracks in the tube blank. When the heating speed is too fast, the tube blank is prone to heating cracks. The main reason is: when the temperature of the surface of the tube blank increases, a temperature difference occurs between the metal inside the tube blank and the metal on the surface, resulting in inconsistent thermal expansion of the metal and thermal stress. Once the thermal stress exceeds the fracture stress of the material, cracks will occur. ; The heating cracks of the tube blank may exist on the surface of the tube blank or inside, and when the tube blank with heating cracks is perforated, it is easy to form cracks or folds in the inner and outer surfaces of the capillary.
 
Preventive measures: When the tube blank is still at a low temperature after entering the heating furnace, a lower heating rate is used. As the temperature of the tube blank increases, the heating speed can be increased accordingly.

Tube blank heating time and holding time:

The length of the heating time and holding time of the tube blank is related to heating defects (surface oxidation, decarburization, coarse grain size, overheating and even overburning, etc.). Generally speaking, if the heating time of the tube blank at high temperature is longer, it is more likely to cause serious oxidation, decarburization, overheating and even overburning of the surface, and in serious cases, the seamless steel tube will be scrapped.

Preventive measures:
A. Ensure that the tube blank is heated evenly and completely transformed into austenite structure;
B. Carbides should dissolve into austenite grains;
C. The austenite grains cannot be coarse and mixed crystals cannot appear;
D. After heating, the tube blank cannot be overheated or overburned.

In short, in order to improve the heating quality of the tube blank and prevent heating defects, the following requirements are generally followed when formulating the tube blank heating process parameters:
A. The heating temperature is accurate to ensure that the perforation process is carried out within the temperature range with the best pierceability of the tube blank;
B. The heating temperature is uniform, and strive to make the heating temperature difference between the longitudinal and transverse directions of the tube blank not greater than ±10 °C;
C. Less metal burning loss, during the heating process, the tube blank should be prevented from overoxidizing, surface cracking, bonding, etc.
D. The heating system is reasonable, and the reasonable coordination of heating temperature, heating speed and heating time (holding time) should be done to prevent the tube blank from overheating or even overburning.

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