Direct-chill (DC) casting is currently the most common semi-continuous casting practice in non-ferrous metallurgy. The process is characterized by molten metal being fed through a bottomless water cooled mould where it is sufficiently solidified around the outer surface that it takes the shape of the mould and acquires sufficient mechanical strength to contain the molten core at the centre. As the ingot emerges from the mould, water impinges directly from the mould to the ingot surface (direct chill), falls over the cast surface and completes the solidification. A scheme of the process is shown in Figure 1.

During this process, three different cooling zones are identified: primary mold cooling, secondary water cooling, and bottom block cooling. (see Figure 1).