Steel is one of the most widely used materials in the world . It is used in a large number of industrial applications, like manufacturing of vehicles, machines, pipelines, and cable towers as well as constructing ships and buildings. Steel quality is critical for these applications, and the rating of non-metallic inclusions (NMIs) in steel is exploited to determine their influence on the quality [2-3]. Fast, precise, and flexible NMI rating solutions which deliver reliable and consistent results offer significant advantages for steel producers and manufacturers of components and parts made with steel. The basic working principles of an automated solution and its advantages for rating steel inclusions are described in this article.
The rating of NMIs to determine steel quality in an efficient and cost-effective way for steel production and industry manufacturing can be achieved, overcoming the challenges arising with manual rating solutions , using an automated rating solution.
An automated solution consists of an optical microscope with a motorized stage and objective nosepiece operated with a sophisticated software. It enables a fully automated inclusion rating over the whole steel sample. The typical workflow consists of :
- Definition of the sample and scan area.
- Definition of 5 or 9 focus points in the scan area for data acquisition.
Automatic analysis of the entire sample without the need for users to be present during