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AMETEK Surface Vision System Helps Steel Manufacturer to Prevent Strip Breakages

Friday, June 26, 2020

A steel manufacturer of high-quality products has reduced the frequency of damaging strip breakages thanks to a system provided by AMETEK Surface Vision, the leading provider of online surface inspection solutions.

With steel mills operating at high speed, a breakage in the strip can cause serious and costly damage to equipment. Ternium Case Study

Ternium S.A.
 one of the leading steel manufacturers in the Americas, wanted to find a way to minimize these breakages, safeguarding the mechanical integrity of the mill and ensuring maximum process continuity.

With 17 sites across Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, and the United States, Ternium has plants covering the entire manufacturing process from iron ore extraction to the creation of high-value-added products.

Its plant in Monterrey, Mexico, operates a pickling line tandem cold mill with five stands, six high. The plant is focused mainly on producing automotive products with high-quality requirements.

AMETEK Surface Vision’s SmartView® system was installed on the line to provide automated monitoring of surface quality issues on the coils passing through the mill, which has a rolling capacity of 6,000 tons a day.

The SmartView system combines cutting-edge software and rugged, proven hardware to deliver the most precise real-time detection and classification of material defects. 

Uniting the company’s powerful surface inspection and monitoring capabilities, synchronized high-resolution color camera technology is supported by powerful LED lighting arrays for the high-quality image capture of defects using multiple inspection angles. 

All hardware is non-proprietary, allowing AMETEK Surface Vision experts to select the best-fit technology for each application, delivered with the highest consistency and without compromise by the most experienced service personnel.

Additionally, AMETEK Surface Vision’s inspection and monitoring systems are completely modular, so they can be expanded or upgraded whenever needed tomeet changing customer requirements.

The defects responsible for the strip breakages were correctly detected and classified by the SmartView® system. However, since some steel defects are challenging by their nature, and could be misclassified or not classified at all, the defect classification task was critical for the results obtained.

Ternium Case Study

Working in partnership, AMETEK Surface Vision and Ternium were able to find an effective solution that was able to better identify significant problems, protecting the mill and the process.

This involved the implementation of SmartView’s color-coded classification tool to identify defects on a gradient of severity, and the connection of the system to the plant’s PLC, which enabled automatic line speed reduction if a defect was detected.

The full story of the challenges facing Ternium, and how the AMETEK Surface Vision system helped to overcome them, is told in a new case study, which can be downloaded here.