2022 Advanced Cupola Concepts Workshop

The Depot
September 27 – 28, 2022


Would you like to:

  • Have the opportunity to discuss cupola issues and operations beyond the basics?
  • Learn how to further reduce variations and improve the consistency and quality of the iron you melt?
  • Gain a more in-depth knowledge and understanding of all things cupola?

Then join us for this two-day seminar with leading experts in the field who will teach you well beyond the basics of your cupola operation.

Note: All AFS member attendees are invited to the Cupola Committee meeting following the conference on Sept. 29, regardless of committee membership. This meeting includes a second opportunity to tour Waupaca Foundry.


  • The Depot
  • Tell City, IN
  • September 27 – 28, 2022
Get Directions

Hotel Information

  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites
  • Tell City, IN
  • $135.40/night (All taxes & fees included)

Standard room rate of $135.40. Attendees can  reserve directly with the hotel by calling (812) 547-0800 and requesting the AFS room block. The hotel’s check-in time is 3 p.m. Check-in prior to the hotel’s published check-in times are subject to availability. Check-out time is 11 a.m. 

Conference Agenda

Tuesday, September 27, 2022
9 a.m.
Waupaca Foundry Plant #5 Tour
Registration Begins (at the workshop venue)
1 p.m.





Pete Satre
Allied Mineral Products Inc., Melting Division Chair, Columbus, OH

Cupola Introduction & Principles of Operations
1:05 p.m.
Cupola Introduction & Principles of Operations





David J. Kasun
P.E. Kuttner North America, Port Washington, WI

  • Basic cupola theory introduction, general melting principles
  • Cupola design variations, examples of cost saving and performance changes
    • Lined/unlined
    • hot/cold blast
    • above & below charge takeoff
    • spout designs
  • Cupola zones (top gas, preheat, melting, combustion, well, tap and siphon)
  • Coke combustion, Boudouaard reaction, gas chemistry, oxidizing-reducing atmospheres
  • Mass energy balance principles
  • Heat transfer in the cupola and charge material sizing
  • Thermal efficiency, combustion air demand
  • Effects of hot blast temperature, oxygen injection and humidity
  • Tuyere arrangement, tuyere design, tuyere water cooling considerations (pressure, flow, instruments, leak detection methods)
  • Iron dam height, slag layer depth and hearth pressure effects
  • Cupola geometry considerations (blast ratio, preheat time, charge material sizing)
  • Slag rate and fluxing
  • Cupola computer simulation/modeling (KM16v3)
2:30 p.m.
2:40 p.m.
Cupola Introduction & Principles of Operations (continued)





David J. Kasun
P.E. Kuttner North America, Port Washington, WI

  • Charge makeup
  • Basic properties of charge materials (surface area: mass, melting points, heats of fusion, slag generation)
  • Thermochemical reactions
  • Iron superheating and carbon pickup
  • Slag chemistry, fluxing and slag rates
  • Oxidation and reduction reactions, effects of gas chemistry on metallurgy
  • Silicon losses/melt losses
  • Well chemistry reactions
    • Carbon pickup
    • Silicon loss & recovery (FeO reactions)
    • Effect of slag layer on carbon pickup, temperature, FeO interactions
    • Well height/diameter - industry practices, effects & considerations
3:30 p.m.
Charge Materials
3:40 p.m.

Metallics (Grade, specifications, physical and chemistry properties)

J.P. Kramer

AMERICAN Cast Iron Pipe Co., Birmingham, AL

  • Standard Metallic charge materials
  • Alternative materials, key points for running trials
  • Avoiding Issues with Charge Materials (dirt, contamination, etc.)

Foundry Coke
Steve Hay
Hay Melting Solutions LLC, South Lyon, MI

  • Heating value, properties & characteristics
  • Principle of physical and chemical properties in the cupola

Brian Johnson, Hickman Williams & Co., Valparaiso, IN

  • Natural (high purity)
  • Briquetted materials (FeSi, SiC, FeMn, etc.)
  • Injection grades (Carbon, FeSi, SiC)

Brian Johnson, Hickman Williams & Co. Valparaiso, IN

  • Limestone/Dolomitic Limestone (properties, purity, sizing)
  • Alternative fluxes (calcium carbide, fluorspar)


Questions and Open Discussion

5 p.m.
Day 1 Concludes
5:30 p.m.
Networking Reception (drinks & appetizers)

Pour Haus
706 Humboldt Street
Tell City, IN 47586
(812) 547-2739

Wednesday, September 28, 2022
8 a.m





David J. Kasun
P.E. Kuttner North America, Port Washington, WI

Cupola Safety
8:05 a.m.
Cupola Practices and Topics

Alex Croll
Waupaca Foundry Inc., Tell City, IN

  • PPE for various jobs
  • CO hazards/monitoring, meter types and locations
  • Confined space
  • Charge area
  • Securing area during tap out, bottom drop, regular operation
  • Furnace water leaks
  • General water hazards
  • General discussions/topics
9 a.m.
Operating the Cupola
9:10 a.m.
Preparing the Cupola for Startup

Jim Wright
McWane Ductile, Coshocton, OH

  • Start-up checklist, tools, safety equipment, PPE, procedures
  • Bed coke selection
  • Coke light off and measurement
  • Safety tuyere operation, discharge and drop area preparation
  • Charging, startup special charges
  • Blast On
  • Tap out procedures & safety (open vs. closed taphole)
  • Preparation for extended campaigns
  • What to do when problems occur
  • Charge changes, blast and oxygen settings –associated issues, considerations & quantitative/qualitative results.
10:10 a.m.
10:20 a.m.
Cupola Operation





Lyle Heberling
Iron Casting Research Institute, Columbus, OH

  • Chemistry Control, operator adjustments (blast, oxygen, charge recipe, spout additions)
  • Iron and slag sampling and testing (chemistry and temperature)
  • Cupola operation relationships to chemistry and temperature
    • High/low bed
    • Charge material weighing precision
    • Metallic and alloy quality and consistency
    • Weigh compensation
  • Slag Control (basicity, color, testing, quantity)
  • Optimizing costs, special charges, transition charges
  • Least cost standard charge (consideration of hidden costs and melt losses)
  • Record keeping, reporting
  • Automation and data collection, reporting
11:30 a.m.
12:30 p.m.
Metallurgical Charge/Chemistry Calculations

Alex Croll
Waupaca Foundry Inc., Tell City, IN

  • Lowest cost charge recipe calculations
  • Metallurgical and chemistry calculations
  • Melt loss calculations, methods to verify losses
  • Oxidation loss calculations and optimization methods
1:30 p.m.

Panel Discussion

  • Operational tips and tricks and troubleshooting
  • “Cupola 911”
  • Chemistry issues, high C, low C
  • Chemistry issues, high Si, low Si
  • Chemistry issues, contamination
  • Temperature control
  • Leaking tuyeres or shell
  • Hot spots on shell, well
  • Blowing at taphole, high back pressure
  • Options is taphole design
  • Front spout measurement methods
2:10 p.m.
Refractory Systems – Material, Installation
2:20 p.m.
Refractory Systems – Material, Installation

Jim Frost
Reno Refractories, Morris, AL





Pete Satre
Allied Mineral Products, Inc., Columbus, OH

  • Lining material selection – various zones of cupola
  • Chemical, slag and temperature corrosion of linings
  • Refractory properties and physical characteristics

Refractory – Complete Installation and Mid-Campaign Repairs

  • Inspecting and removing old refractory
  • Options and varieties of lining materials
  • Taphole and separator repair
    • Setting elevations, setting the dam and slag notch, gauges
    • Dam height/slag notch control
  • Optimizing refractory performance in each zone of the cupola.
  • Dry-Out
  • Extended campaign practices, issues, considerations & quantitative/qualitative results.
Future Cupola Technologies
3:50 p.m.
Future Cupola Technologies





David J. Kasun
P.E. Kuttner North America, Port Washington, WI

  • Oxy Fuel (NG) burners/Oxy Solid fuel burners
  • Plasma superheating
  • Alternative fuels (coke supplements)


  • Waste Heat to Energy/Waste Heat Re-use technologies
    • Electric generation
    • Building heating/domestic hot water and process heating
    • Dehumidification and other process heat re-use
    • Carbon sequestration technologies
    • Incentive tax credits
4:30 p.m.
Questions, Evaluations, & Open Discussion
5 p.m.
Workshop Concludes


Registration Fees

AFS Member: $465.00 | Non-AFS Member: $700.00

Cancellations & Substitutions

AFS presents a variety of technical and management conferences (in both in-person and virtual formats). The refund policy for AFS conferences is as follows: 1) Substitutions are accepted at no charge at any time up until the start of the conference; 2) Full refunds are offered if AFS is notified in writing of cancellation at least 30 days in advance of the conference. No refunds or credits are available for less than 30 days written notice.