Hazelett celebrates 100 years of continuous casting

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Hazelett Corporation has been designing and manufacturing continuous casting machines for the global metal industries for 100 years. Hazelett technology is used in metal manufacturing processes worldwide to cast aluminium, copper, zinc and lead into metal strip and bar used to create countless products. Today, over 100 Hazelett twin-belt continuous casting machines are operating in 27 countries around the world. The latest casting machine will be shipped to JW Aluminum of Mt. Holly, South Carolina, in August this year.

C.W. Hazelett commercialized the world’s first continuous casting machines in the 1920s. He dedicated his career to advancing this technology, introducing the twin-belt caster in the 1940s. Upon his death in 1956, his sons R. William (Bill) and S. Richard (Dick) incorporated the business and located it in Vermont.

Bill, president from 1956 to 2009, built the company into one of the world’s leading continuous casting machine manufacturers before handing the reins over to his son David. There are over 60 patents in Bill’s name and he was personally responsible for many of the advancements that allowed the company to maintain its competitive edge.

Buddy Stemple, vice-chair man of the Aluminum Association along with John Weritz, vice-president of Standards & Technology at the Aluminum Associations delivered a plaque in honour of Hazelett’s 100 years in continuous casting.

Hazelett Corp. is proud to be a family-owned company, transitioning into the fourth generation. “As a family business, Hazelett has the luxury of taking a longer view; one that encourages investment in research and development, building long-term relationships, preserving our environment, and contemplating the legacy we leave future generations,” says president David Hazelett.

David has guided the company through periods of significant volatility in the metals industry. Today, the company is stronger and more technically capable than ever. His vision is for Hazelett to offer the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly metals casting technology in the world. His son Peter joined the company in 2014 and is currently involved in aluminium strip casting research and development.

The company has grown to over 150 skilled employees utilizing nearly 100,000 square feet of buildings in Colchester. Hazelett twin-belt continuous casting machines, as well as critical spare parts, are designed and manufactured in these specialized facilities. The company has an experienced team of engineers and technicians supporting its customers worldwide.

Hazelett Trading (Shanghai) Co., Ltd (HTS), a subsidiary of Hazelett Corp., is the only full-service organization located outside of the United States that offers genuine Hazelett parts. HTS was established specifically to service Hazelett’s Chinese customer base.

Hazelett twin-belt casting machine

The Hazelett twin-belt casting machine offers the world’s highest production rates at the lowest cost for rolled aluminium sheet, with demonstrated energy savings and lower emissions than other processes. The Hazelett twin-belt casting machine also produces the highest quality strip for impact extrusion slugs.  Hazelett has concentrated on producing high-quality sheet for demanding applications, including packaging, transport and building construction.

High surface quality is achieved by controlling the heat transfer from the solidifying strip through the belts. To maintain the uniformity of the heat transfer, the casting belts must remain perfectly stable during the solidification process. The belts are preheated with electric induction heating units prior to their entering the casting mould. High-strength, magnetic back-up rolls are used in the mood to support and restrain the belts. The belts are coated with permanent ‘Matrix’ coatings to control heat transfer and ensure high surface quality.

Gases are injected into the mould interface to adjust heat transfer. In some applications, ESP (electrostatic painting) coatings are continuously applied over the Matrix coatings to further adjust and control heat transfer and mould surface characteristics.

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