In steel manufacturing, the conventional method to determine the mechanical properties and microstructure is by offline, destructive (lab-)characterisation of sample material that is typically taken from the head or the tail of the coil. Since coils can be up to 7 km long, the samples are not always representative for the main coil body. Also, the time delay (typically a few days) between the actual production and the availability of the characterisation results implies that these results cannot be exploited for real-time adaptation of the process settings.
Information about the microstructure and material properties can also be obtained from electromagnetic (EM) and ultrasonic (US) parameters, which can be measured in real-time, non-destructively, and over the full length of the steel strip product. With the aim to improve the consistency in product quality by use of inline EM and US measurements, a European project called “Product Uniformity Control” (PUC) has been set up as a broad collaboration between 4 major European Steel Manufacturers and 10 Universities/Research institutes.
Using both numerical simulations and experimental characterisations, we study the inline measured EM and US parameters in regard of the microstructural and mechanical properties. In this way, we aim to establish an improved understanding of their mutual relationships, and to apply this knowledge in existing and new non-destructive evaluation techniques.
In this paper, the concerted approach of modelling and experimental validation will be addressed, and results of this work will be shown in combination with inline measured data.