Equipment designs include batch types (both car and tray designs), traveling styles and continuous styles, complete with material handling systems and load cooling equipment.
With the batch type design, typically an electrically driven insulated car is used to move a load into and out of the furnace. Often, a double-ended furnace (door at each end) is used with two cars so turnaround time is reduced, thus maximizing production. The alternative to the car bottom design for the batch type units is the tray design. With this design, the load tray rests on a series of support piers within the furnace. A charge machine/transfer car is used for charging/discharging of the tray and transferring the tray from the furnace to a cooling station or to a load/unload station. A third type of batch unit is the traveling furnace. This furnace uses a pair of fixed load bases to support the load. When the cycle is completed on base No. 1, the furnace moves into position over the second load base and immediately begins heating a new load. The previous load is allowed to cool, then is unloaded and replaced with a new load. This can all be accomplished before the next homogenizing cycle is completed. A traveling furnace provides savings in floor because the two load bases require significantly less floor space compared with a double-ended stationery furnace with two load cars.
The patented reversing airflow design with upstream/downstream temperature control using an axial flow fan wheel reverses rotation on a timed basis, which, in turn, reverses the direction of the horizontal airflow through the load. The air stream temperature is monitored and controlled on each side of the load.