Carburizing is a common ‘case hardening’ process, but some applications require a very special approach.
Many components require case in certain areas and not others, and masking the part to do that can be very expensive. This furnace helped avoid that expense by exposing only the area to be carburized to the processing atmosphere, using an innovative but simple sealing system on Oil Patch down hole pump barrels. As a result, millions of barrels of oil have been pumped since 1980 with parts treated in this and a sister furnace, the only two in the world.
The temperature is closely controlled because the heating elements are actually exposed to the atmosphere, allowing for optimum heat transfer without the barriers inherent in radiant tube-heated or retort-type systems.
Some components require very precise control of temperature to minimize distortion and control case depth. This box furnace is used to precisely carburize deep-case aircraft bearing races in a nitrogen-methanol atmosphere.