Induction Heating


Induction heating


In the induction hardening of electrically conductive materials, such as steel and other materials, high-frequency heating is used to convert high-frequency electrical energy to heat directly inside the material to be hardened. The basic principle is a simple one. Conduction electrons in the outer shells of the atoms of the metal can move rather freely between the atoms, which are arranged in three-dimensional atomic lattices. When the material is subjected to an alternating magnetic field, these electrons move faster and faster as the frequency increases. Finally, the electrons collide with the atoms, thereby generating heat. The alternating magnetic field is said to induce eddy currents in the material. In practice, the magnetic energy is created by means of alternating-current coils laid around the materials to be hardened. One of the greatest advantages with induction heating is its ability to heat up a limited part of the application. Heating time and temperature may be controlled with greater accuracy and this method is well suitable for automatic production lines. This effective method also provides a more favourable working environment.