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GREENLIGHT® for Heat Treatment Applications ensures a stable quenching

A US based global Tier I supplier to the automotive industry utilizes Houghton aqueous quenchants for their induction hardening processes.Controlling the concentration is essential in aqueous quenchants to ensure the proper metallurgical properties of the heat treated part.Kinematic viscosity is the best method for controlling concentration, but not conducive for the plant floor.Most customers utilize a refractometer for checking concentration.The refractometer reading is multiplied by a factor to determine the concentration. The refractometer requires manpower for checking concentration of each induction hardening system and can be susceptible to contamination (oil, dirt, etc.).The Houghton Approach The Greenlight® Unit is a self-contained measurement system which sets the new standard for continuous concentration monitoring of metalworking fluids, including aqueous quenchants for immersion and induction hardening applications. The sensor housing and integrated flow through adapter are detachable for easy cleaning and maintenance. Red, yellow, and green lights illuminate to indicate if fluid concentration is within specified programmable process parameters. The patented sensor is up to 1000 times more accurate than a typical handheld refractometer.The Houghton Team worked with the Senior Engineer for Heat Treat at the Tier I supplier in evaluating the Greenlight® Unit.A unit was shipped to the induction hardening OEM for testing and run-off.Results and Benefits The Greenlight® Unit worked successfully in measuring the concentration of the aqueous quenchant utilized in the induction hardening process.The induction hardening machine was then sent to the manufacturing facility.According to the Senior Heat Treat Engineer benefits include:

  • Real time confirmation of the quench concentrations to ensure a stable process. 
  • Ability to integrate with the monitoring systems on the induction hardening machine to confirm each cycle processed at the correct quench concentration and is recordable. 
  • Ensures AIAG CQI-9 conformance to the induction process. 
  • Easy to set up and use.

The Tier I supplier eventually purchased 18 more Greenlight® Units and have plans to purchase an additional 14 Units.