What’s Foundry Engineering?

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Foundry engineering involves designing and building structures to heat raw materials to high temperatures to create metal products. Foundries have large furnaces, mold building stations, and storage facilities. Foundry engineers also repair and improve existing foundries. They do not build metal forging machinery.

From aluminum to steel, zinc to iron, the world’s metals are created in foundries. Foundry engineering is the profession that revolves around the design of new foundries. Engineers custom build a building made to heat raw materials to incredible temperatures to pour them into molds and create a product that can be sold. Additionally, many foundry engineering jobs focus on repairing old foundries or making them more efficient in order to maintain a presence in the highly competitive metal industry.

Depending on the metal involved, each foundry is different, but they all share many of the same steps in reaching completion of their final products. All foundries have a large furnace that reaches temperatures above 3,000 degrees Celsius (5,432 degrees Fahrenheit) to melt raw metal or scrap metal. When the metal reaches a liquid state, it is poured into a mold which can range from the shape of a steel beam to large blocks and many other designs. Metals are finished by grinding or polishing in order to obtain the correct dimensional shape. The foundries also have a large port area for shipping by train and truck.

A foundry engineering firm works to design and build a working structure to replicate this process, while meeting the customer’s individual needs. Engineering and foundry experts consult to determine the amount and type of metal desired to build a suitable foundry. Foundries may have multiple furnaces, bucket conveyor systems for transporting hot liquid metals, various mold building stations, cooling locations, and storage facilities. The engineers work with foundry owners and local zoning laws to design the building.

Foundry engineers only build structures for foundries. Traditionally they do not build the metal forging machinery used in foundries. That machinery is purchased from a third party.
The second half of foundry engineering involves construction. Some engineering companies have a construction crew or hire a construction company to build the foundry. Engineers work with construction foremen to plan and build the structure from start to finish.

Another foundry engineering service is the repair and improvement of existing foundries. Older foundries often need serious repairs or simply need to become more efficient. Foundry engineers review the current configuration and structure and determine solutions to meet the customer’s needs within the current structure.

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