A method of controlling the actual growth velocity during directional solidification based on ultrasound has been developed. For this purpose a pulse echo technique is used to measure the actual solidification rate online. This quantity is used to control the furnace velocity. Solidification experiments with metallic alloys and constant furnace velocity often result in non-steady actual solidification rates. Experiments carried out with online process control demonstrate that a really steady-state solidification with a constant solidification rate is achieved. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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