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Proceedings of the 15th International Heat Transfer Conference, IHTC-15

August 10-15, 2014, Kyoto, Japan

IHTC15-8596

STUDY OF THERMAL CONDUCTANCE IN A STRIP-ROLL SYSTEM


J.-M. Buchlin1*, M. Delsipe1, Ph. Planquart1, M. Renard2
1

von Karman Institute for Fluid Dynamics-, Rhode-Saint-Gense, Belgium


2
DREVER Int. SA, Angleur, Belgium

ABSTRACT
The paper describes an experimental investigation carried out on a semi-industrial prototype of regenerative roll
quench unit to determine the contact thermal conductance (CTC) between a roll and a moving strip. The
quantitative infrared thermograpy allows the temperature mapping of the strip while the angular evolution of the
roll temperature is obtained by mean of thermocouples connected to a telemetry acquisition system. A thermal
model allows the determination of the CTC. Typical results emphasize the effect of some parameters such as the
velocity, the temperature and the tensile strength of the strip.

KEY WORDS: Measurement and instrumentation contact thermal conductance


1. INTRODUCTION
The knowledge of heat transfer between two solids is often required when designing thermal systems. A
typical example is the continuous annealing of moving strip based on the roll quench process [1-2]. The von
Karman Institute has undertaken in close collaboration with DREVER International S.A, a research
programme aiming to develop a new concept of annealing furnace for the treatment of steel strips. Called the
roll regenerative furnace (RRF), this innovative technique, few energy intensive, consists of benefiting from
the thermal potential provided by the hot strip leaving the furnace to preheat the cold strip entering the
furnace by means of a set of rolls as illustrated in Fig. 1 [patent No WO 2009/007362 by DREVER
International].

Hot strip

Cold strip

Fig. 1 Principle of the roll regenerative furnace


An engineering model involving basic unsteady conduction equations for the strips and the rolls has been
developed to estimate the performance of the RRF [3]. Predictions show that one of the main controlling
factors is the contact thermal conductance between the strip and the roll. Fig. 2 shows a typical example of

*Corresponding Author: buchlin@vki.ac.be

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the thermal performance expected in function of the CTC-value; the difference of the strip temperature, T,
between the inlet and outlet of the regenerator is plotted versus the number of rolls used (N).
T [C]

300

200
N

100

10

CTC [kW/m2.K]
0

Fig. 2 Performance of the roll regenerative furnace [3]


A state of the art has been carried out in the frame of this research program to evaluate the knowledge about
the CTC. It has been noticed that such parameter depends on the nature of the materials in contact, surface
roughness, temperature level and contact pressure, which is function of the strip tensile strength. However, in
regard of the sparse data found in the literature [4-5] concerning this specific configuration, an experimental
investigation has been undertaken with the support of the Walloon region (Convention n6240). The
objective is the setting up of a database incorporating the effect of the operating parameters on the CTC for
such a counter flow regenerator. The main issues of the project are reported in this paper.

2. THE EXPERIMENTAL FACILITY


3.1 The test facility Roll Regenerative Furnace (RRF )
A dedicated facility, called RRF (Roll Regenerative Furnace), has been constructed, a schematic of which is
shown in Fig. 3. It consists of a (Inox or Carbon) steel band of 0.3m wide with a thickness eS = 0.3mm or
0.5mm thick, entrained by a pair of driving rolls of 0.3m in diameter and passing through a radiant heating
tube unit of 100kW to reach a maximum temperature of 650 C. Then the hot strip is put in contact with a
cylindrical steel roll of 0.8m in diameter and 0.02m thick. This roll is cooled on its opposite side (part
without strip in contact) by an array of air jets (plenum1composed of 10 slot nozzles of 5mm with pitch of
60mm) to control its initial temperature at the attack of the strip. Similarly the strip undergoes on its return
additional cooling by means of air multi jets (Plenum 2 designed as Plenum 1 but with nozzle pitch of
200mm) to maintain steady state conditions. The two jet plenums are supplied by a fan with a total
volumetric flow rate of 2.8m3/s under a relative pressure of 10 kPa. The facility allows line velocity, U,
ranging from 0.25 to 0.75 m/s. Fig. 4 provides some views of the facility.
Strip

Roll Shell

Radiant Heater

Driving
Rollers
Blower
Plenum 2

Fig. 3 3D schematic of the RRF facility

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Fig. 4 Views of the RRF Facility

2.2 The instrumentation


Fig. 5 provides a schematic of the roll instrumentation. The roll is instrumented with two identical combs of
5 thermocouples of 0.5mm size; one at the middle of the roll and the other off-centered close to the edge. For
each comb the thermocouples are located at 0.2mm, 5mm, 10mm, 15mm and 19.8 mm from the external
surface of the roll, respectively. Prior to be inserted in the roll, all the thermocouples are calibrated in a
thermostatic bath with control temperature at 0.1C. The thermal contact inside the roll is ensured by coating
the thermocouples with high thermal conductivity glue. Regular checking of calibration is performed before
each test.
The thermocouples are connected to a data acquisition card, part of a WIFI telemetry unit mounted on the
axis of the roll. The signal received on PC is treated by dedicated software developed on Labview and Signal
Express platforms.
The external face of the strip is black painted and scanned by an SC3000 IR camera. The thermograms are
processed by an in-house DIP program to obtain the thermal mapping of the strip and the different angular
evolutions of the strip temperature.
Two pyrometers scan the strip; the first is positioned at the exit of the heating chamber and the second
downstream the roll. They allow the monitoring of the inlet and outlet strip temperature.

Pyromete r
M oving strip

Roll shell
T he rmo couple s

Tele metry
IR Ca mera
Pyrome ter

Fig. 5 Thermometric instrumentation of the RRF facility


The entraining roll is equipped with tachymeter and strain gauges, all connected to the electrical power
cabinet of command, to monitor in real-time the velocity and strength of the strip, respectively. This latter is
adjusted by varying the force of a mechanical tensor by means of metal cast weights.

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2.3 The preliminary tuning tests


Campaigns of preliminary test are conducted to perform tuning of the different modules and assess the good
functioning of the instrumentation. These tests allow also the understanding of the system behaviour. As an
example Fig. 6a shows the time evolution of the thermal field in the roll for a heating setting fixed at 300C.
The strip with a thickness of 0.5mm, runs at 0.25m/s and undergoes a strength, , of 2,3kg/mm2. The
thermocouples situated near the roll surface reproduce clearly the transient during the contact with the strip
(temperature up and down). The established thermal regime is characterized by a periodic behavior as
observed in the dashed-line box displayed in Fig. 6a. The CTC determination is based on one cycle of the
established regime. Fig. 6b shows dimensionless surface temperature of the roll during the part of this cycle
when the strip is in contact; the time is now replaced by the angular position =t where is the rotation
speed. It is worthwhile remarking that the roll surface temperature passes through a maximum between 35
and 45; It means that all the heat transfer with the strip is achieved after this angle.
260

1.2

TR [C]

Test

r [mm]
399.8
398
390
385

240

(TR-TR,min)/(TR,max-TR,min)
1
2

0.8
TSo=294C
U=0.25 m/s
eS=0.5mm

220

es= 0.3mm
U=0.25m/s
= 2kg/mm2

0.4

r = 399.8mm
[]

t [mn]
200

30

(a)

60

90

120

150

180

(b)

Fig. 6 Time and angular evolution of roll temperature


The strip temperature is inferred from false-color thermograms obtained with the IR camera. These thermal
mappings confirm that the central region of the strip exhibits a uniform transversal distribution. Fig. 7a displays
a typical IR measurement conducted in the central web region while Fig. 7b plots typical angular distribution of
the strip temperature, TS, along the central axis for two heating conditions; in theses experiments the strip
thickness is eS=0.3mm and the strength is adjusted to 2 kg/mm2. In agreement with Fig. 6b, Fig. 7b shows that
the strip reaches thermal equilibrium rather quickly at about 40, indeed. The asymptotic trend noticed in Fig. 7b
indicates the end of the heat exchange between the roll and the strip.

2.4 The analytical model


The determination of the CTC-value results from an analytical treatment of the strip and roll measurements. The
theoretical model on which relies the data processing expresses the enthalpy variation of the strip (the Biot
number is here very small):

S C S (TS ) eS

U d TS

= qCTC qenv
R d

(1)

R is the external roll radius and qenv represents the heat loss to the environment, which is estimated from thermal
convection [6-8] and radiation models [3]. Eq. 1 anticipates a variation of the strip temperature high enough to

IHTC15-8596
affect the value of the heat capacity. qCTC represents the heat exchange between the strip and the roll, from which
the CTC-value is deduced.
0

[]

[]

10

10

20

es= 0.3mm
U=0.25m/s
= 2kg/mm2

20

es= 0.3mm
U=0.25m/s
= 2kg/mm2

30

30

40

40
TS [C]

150

200

250

TS [C]
350

300

(a)

450

550

650

(b)
Fig. 7 Thermal behavior of the strip

Eq. 1 shows that the knowledge of the local dTS/d -value calculated from accurate curve fitting of the TS()
experimental profile (see Fig. 7b) allows the determination of the local CTC-value:

qCTC
CTC =
=
(TS TRM )

U d TS

qenv
R d
(TS TRM )

S C S (TS ) eS

(2)

To be consistent with the engineering developed in [3] and as pointed out in Eq. 2, the adopted definition of
the CTC is based on the mean temperature of the roll:
R

TRM = R CR u TR dr
Ri

CR u dr

(3)

Follows a definition of the mean contact thermal conductance, CTCm, in agreement with [3]:

CTCm ( c ) =

S eSU
R c

TS (c )

TSo

CS ( T )

dT
(TRM T )

(4)

Where c is the angular coverage of the strip on the roll.

3. THE CTC RESULTS


Experiments are carried out to identify the effect of different parameters such as the strip strength (1 to 2
kg/mm2), the strip velocity U (0.25 to 0.75 m/s), the initial strip temperature TSo (150 to 650 C) and the initial

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strip-roll temperature difference TSRo (50 to 225C). Moreover, Inox and Carbon steel strips are successively
tested.
Fig. 8 emphasizes the effect of the strip tensile force on the angular variation of the contact thermal conductance.
The CTC deteriorates clearly when decreases. One notices 50% drop of CTCmax. To seek for the best
performance all the other results are presented for the highest tested.
4
CTC [kW/m2.K]

[kg/mm2 ]

1
2

es=0.3 mm;
U=0.25 m/s

200 C< TS< 330C


[]

10

20

30

40

50

Fig. 8 Effect of the strip strength on the CTC


Fig. 9 highlights interesting angular evolutions of the CTC, which constitute recurring results obtained
throughout several tests performed at different operating conditions. One observes a rather low value at the
beginning of the strip-roll contact up to an angle of about 10, indeed. Such a finding reveals a very weak
mechanical contact probably due to a poor flatness of the strip that does not fit perfectly the roll curvature.
Obviously when happening, this undesirable event will yield poor performance of the roll regenerator furnace.
Fig. 9 emphasizes also the effect of the web motion on the CTC evolution. The increase of the strip velocity
shifts the thermal equilibrium towards the larger -values; that affects slightly the global value of the contact
thermal conductance.
6

CTC [kW/m2.K]
e=0.3mm
= 2 kg/mm2

TSo

10

20

U=0.37m/s

TSRo
[C]

150
350

45
105

30

eS=0.3mm
= 2 kg/mm2

U=0.50 m/s

CTC [kW/m2.K]

U=0.25 m/s

TSo

150
350

[]

40

10

20

TSRo
[C]

45
105

30

[]
40

Fig. 9 Effect of weak mechanical contact on the CTC


To synthesize the effect of the different operating parameters on the strip-roll heat exchange, the results are
resented in terms of CTCm. In the industrial RRF design the foreseen angular coverage, c, will be ranging
between 25 and 45, therefore these two values are considered in the presentation of the following results.
Fig. 10 shows the effect U on the mean contact thermal conductance. The CTCm-values plotted in Fig. 10 result
from an average of the data obtained at each strip velocity but for different thermal conditions tested. The results
fall in the range of 2kW/m2.K to 4.5kW/m2.K in agreement with the sparse literature [4,5]. Even though the

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effect is small for Inox steel data, those of the Carbon steel tests indicate an increase of the CTCm as the strip
speed augments.
6

CTCm [kW/m2.K]

CTCm [kW/m2.K]

2
Inox
Carbon

c=25
0
0.2

0.4

0.6

Inox
Carbon

c=45

U [m/s]
0

0.2

0.8

0.4

U [m/s]

0.6

0.8

Fig. 10 Effect of the strip velocity on the CTCm


Fig. 11a shows that the heat exchange improves as the initial strip temperature, TSo, increases. However the
benefit becomes negligible above 400C. Similarly, an improvement of the CTCm (about 20%) is depicted in Fig.
11b when the initial temperature difference between the strip and the roll exceeds 150C.
6

c [ ]

CTCm [kW/m2.K]

25

45

CTCm [kW/m2. K]

4
2

U=0.75 m/s
2
100

200

300

TBRo [C]

c = 45

TSo [C]
0

400

(a) Initial strip temperature

50

100

150

200

250

(b) Initial strip-roll temperature difference

Fig. 11 Effect of the initial thermal conditions on CTCm


Finally it appears relevant to plot the data in function of the thermal efficiency factor defined as the ratio
of the effective exchanged heat over the coverage, c, to the maximum heat that could be transferred from the
strip to the roll. The expression of is:

TS 0 TS ( c )
TS 0 TR 0

(5)

It is worth noting that does not depend on the strip velocity. Fig. 12 displays the results for both types of
steel. Notice that as the angular coverage increases, TS tends TR and approaches the unity. However, the
contact thermal conductance keeps a more or less constant mean value (with 17% of standard deviation) in
the range 0.4 1.

IHTC15-8596

8
6

CTCm [kW/m2.K]

c []

45

25

4
2
0

0.4

0.5

0.6

0.7

0.8

0.9

Fig. 12 CTCm versus the thermal efficiency,

6. CONCLUSIONS
A study of the contact thermal conductance, CTC, between a moving strip and a roll is presented. The study
is motivated by the modeling of the performance of a roll regenerative furnace that is a new concept of
annealing furnace for the treatment of steel strips.
A dedicated semi-industrial facility with only one roll and allowing strip temperature up to 650C is used. Its
main instrumentation involves quantitative infrared thermography and telemetric thermometry.
To support data processing and physical interpretation simple analytical model is developed. It allows the
determination of the angular evolution of the contact thermal conductance, which is based on the mean
temperature of the roll.
The results show that the heat transfer is achieved over an angular coverage not exceeding 45. In most of
the trials, low CTC-values are found for 10, revealing the importance to ensure a good mechanical
adhesion and a high-quality flatness of the strip. Such a remark is corroborated by the low performance
obtained at small strip tensile strength.
The value of the contact thermal conductance averaged over the angular coverage, CTCm, is ranged between
2kW/m2K et 4.5kW/m2K in good agreement with the few data reported in the literature. No marked effect of
the increase of the line velocity is found for the Inox steel strip while a benefit influence is observed for the
Carbon strip.
Higher is the initial strip temperature and the roll-strip temperature difference better is the CTCm. Plotted in
function of the thermal efficiency , the mean contact thermal conductance does not exhibit significant
variation.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT
The authors would like to thank the Walloon region for its continuous support along this research
programme.

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NOMENCLATURE

C
specific heat
( J/kg.K )
e
thickness
(m)
CTC conductance
( W/m2.K )
q
heat flux
( W/m2 )
R
radius
(m)
T
temperature
( C )
U,u
velocity
(m/s)
subscript
c
coverage
CTC contact thermal conductance
env
environment
M
mean

m
o
R
S

angle
density
tensile strength
thermal efficiency
rotation speed

()

( kg/m- )
( kg/mm2 )

(-)
( rd/s )

mean
initial
roll
strip

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[1]
[2]
[3]
[4]

[5]

[6]
[7]
[8]

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