Research group “High Temperature Flows in Metallurgical Melts”

Contact person: Moritz Eickhoff

Areas of research

The knowledge of flows during refining and casting of e.g. steel, copper and aluminium in metallurgical reactors (converter, ladle, tundish and casting mould) is crucial for the optimization of the quality of semi-finished and final products. The options of flow measurements in metallurgical mels are very limited due to the high temperatures. Therefore flow and heat transfer phenomena have to be investigated using physical and numerical models.

Water models of metallurgical reactors
The kinematic viscosities of metal melts and water are in the same area of magnitude and for this reason their flow characteristics are almost equal. Therefore an investigation of melts using water models is possible. The IOB has different water model test stands available.

  • Tundish, casting mould, ladle and converter
  • Visualisation of fluid flow with laser light sheet technique
  • 3D measurement of turbulent fluid flow fields with DPIV and LDA Measurement of temperature and concentration fields with LIF
  • Retention time measurement and analysis of mixing processes
  • Determination of particle distribution and precipitation curves using Coulter Counter
  • Fluid flow optimisation by passive fluid flow manipulation
  • Measurement of water level movements with ultrasonic sensors
Water model of a strip caster (photographer: Martin Braun)

Numerical simulation
In parallel to flow investigations using physical models, numerical simulations using CFD are carried out. To improve the accuracy of the calculations, the simulations are first conducted for water flows and the boundary conditions are validated against very accurate laser optical measurements. Only after this validation step the simulations are conducted for multi-phase, non-isothermal metal melts.

  • Simulation of fluid flow of melts in metallurgical reactors (multi-phase, non-isothermal)
  • Simulation of mixing process during ladle changes
  • Electroslag Remelting (ESR) and Vacuum Arc Remelting (VAR)– magneto-hydrodynamic and thermotechnical phenomena
  • Simulation of fluid flow as well as combustion and pyrolysis in aluminium melting furnaces
  • 3D Simulation of the VAR process in non-axisymmetric geometries


  • Reduced process models for technical processes
  • Macroscopic texture examination of huge polished micrograph sections

Ongoing research projects

AMAP P5: Sustainable recycling concept: Efficient Melting

Numerical modeling of the momentum, heat and mass transfer in the Vacuum Arc Remelting process (Cooperation with VDM Metals)

Influence of a rotating electrode on the droplet formation and the refining effect in the electroslag-remelting process (DFG)

Experimental and numerical investigations of the multi-phase-flow in the water-model of a ladle as basis for the enhancement of multi-phase-flow models in the computational fluid dynamics of metallurgical reactors (DFG)

Completed research projects

  • Process reduction and CO2 saving in the steel strip production through industrialization of the strip casting technology (BMBF)
  • Process optimization of the double roller strip casting process by systematic distribution of the melt into the melt pool (DFG)
  • Numerical and experimental investigations on steady-state and transient flow in tundishes (DFG)
  • Impulse, heat and mass transfer during argon ESR refining using the example of titanium (DFG)
  • Use of numerical and physical simulation on multi-phase flows and particle separation in tundishes as a contribution to increased cleanness of steels (DFG)
  • Mathematical modelling of fluid induced Vessel motion in the AOD process (Cooperation with SMS Siemag)
  • Numerical and experimental investigation of flow and particle movement in a CSP mould (DFG)
  • Simulation of the velocity and temperature distribution in tundishes with electric arc heating (DFG)