FINITE ELEMENT THERMAL MODELING APPLIED TO FURNACE COOLING AND REFRACTORY DESIGN
The application of finite element modeling to the analysis and design of furnace refractory linings provides a powerful tool for evaluating the advantages of various linings. A common approach in the finite element analysis of refractory lining is to assume perfect contact between the material/joint interfaces. The results of such analysis are extremely useful in determining the relative effectiveness of a given lining without amplifying the required amount of computer resources. Recognizing the dependence of refractory lining life on effective refractory cooling, a refractory cooling model must be able to address the region of refraction/cooling member contact more precisely. In particular, the amount of true contact area between the refractory and the cooling member must be accounted for in the form, of a thermal contact resistance. The practicality of this method requires an evaluation of the effect on refractory cooling due to the increase in true contact area between the materials which can be achieved if the materials have a very smooth surface area. Finite element modeling can assist in this evaluation by incorporating the effects of surface finish in the form of a thermal resistance at the material interfaces.