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Occurs when there is an excessive buildup of steam within the refractory material as it is heated causing a sudden and severe explosion. This is due to an excess of water within the material usually caused by irregular drying of the refractory material or environmental conditions during installation.
Arises at the surface level, or hot-face, of the refractory material where it meets the slag of the material being smelted. It is dependent upon how the composition of the refractory interacts with the composition of the material being smelted at operating temperatures for extended periods.
Emerge after repeated cycles and operational influences such as heat stress, geometry, expansion and contraction of the refractory material and changes in volume.