A Reproduction of the Ancient Bandjeli’s Steel-Making Process
International Journal of Materials Science and Applications
Volume 3, Issue 5, September 2014, Pages: 217-225
Received: Sep. 4, 2014; Accepted: Sep. 23, 2014; Published: Sep. 30, 2014
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Authors
Pali Kpelou, Departement of Physics, Université de Lomé, Lomé, Togo
Gnande Djeteli, Departement of Physics, Université de Lomé, Lomé, Togo
Ayi Djifa Hounsi, Departement of Physics, Université de Lomé, Lomé, Togo
Hans Peter Hahn, Institut für Ethnologie / Campus Westend, Universität Frankfurt, Grüneburgplatz 60323 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Tiburce Ahouangbe Aboki, GMS-LPCS UMR7045 / Chimie Paristech Paris Cedex 05, France
Kossi Napo, Departement of Physics, Université de Lomé, Lomé, Togo; Palais de la découverte / Universcience, Avenue Franklin Roosevelt, 75008 Paris, France
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Abstract
This paper presents an ancient traditional steel-making process of Bandjeli, in the Bassar Region in the Republic of Togo (West Africa). The iron specialists of Bandjeli have owned technical knowledge to cast direct reduced iron (DRI) likely direct reduced steel (DRS). This know-how was transferred to each generation over many centuries. The description of this steel-making process is focused on the steps that lead to the iron ingot: the construction of the furnace, the raw materials collection and their preparation, the furnace filling and the smelting operation. Microstructures of as-smelted and thermo-mechanical treated samples as well as hardness data are presented. Optical and SEM micrographs indicate a Widmannstätten structure type, comprising of a plates or needles of ferrite or alpha iron (Feα) in light contrast and grains of pearlite (dark contrast). Micro-hardness measurements indicate values ranging from 100 to 700 Hv, this field covers the micro-hardness values of the ferrite and pearlite. Microstructural and mechanical properties of the as-obtained product suggest direct steel processing from Bandjeli’s natural draught furnace. These results are necessary for further investigations on the as-smelted steel and on the contribution of this traditional smelting technology to the iron industry.
Keywords
Traditional Steel-Making Process, Natural Draught Furnace, Direct Reduced Steel, Microstructure, Hardness
To cite this article
Pali Kpelou, Gnande Djeteli, Ayi Djifa Hounsi, Hans Peter Hahn, Tiburce Ahouangbe Aboki, Kossi Napo, A Reproduction of the Ancient Bandjeli’s Steel-Making Process, International Journal of Materials Science and Applications. Vol. 3, No. 5, 2014, pp. 217-225. doi: 10.11648/j.ijmsa.20140305.23
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