Induction heaters are used to heat conductive materials in a non-contact process. Commercially, they are used for heat treating, brazing, soldering, etc., as well as to melt and forge iron, steel, and aluminum.
This Instructable will walk you through the construction of a high-power (30kVA) heater, suitable for melting aluminum and steel. Note that to take full advantage of this design, you will need a 220V outlet, at least a 50A single-phase one and preferably a 50A or 60A 3-phase outlet.
About the author:
Bayley Wang (me) is a EE student at MIT. I'm responsible for a variety of nefarious power electronics projects which you can find on my blog; perhaps most interestingly is oneTesla, which has since gained a life of its own as a startup creating DRSSTC kits.
- This project uses mains voltage. While well-behaved, 110/220 mains can seriously injure, maim, and/or kill you if used improperly.
- The voltage across the tank capacitor can potentially ring up to hundreds of volts. Don't let the 20:1 step-down ratio fool you!
- When scoping the circuit, beware of ground loops.
- The work piece, naturally, can get very hot. DO NOT TOUCH! Less obviously, do not rapidly quench the work piece with water, as this can lead to dangerous sputtering.
- This project uses power electronics. Under fault conditions, semiconductor devices used in this project may rapidly heat, vent, and/or release rapidly moving shrapnel. Shield appropriately.
WIth that said and done, let us move on.