Today let’s talk about the various kinds of ferrosilicon and 6 surprising ways of ferro silicon uses.
What is ferrosilicon?
Ferrosilicon is an alloy composed of iron and silicon. It is made of coke, steel scraps, quartz (silica) as raw materials smelting in an electric furnace. The content of silicon in ferrosilicon is 10%-90%.
According to the size of ferrosilicon, it can be divided into ferro silicon lumps, ferro silicon briquette, and atomized ferrosilicon powder.
What is ferro silicon used for?
Due to the properties of ferrosilicon, it is used as a deoxidizer, alloy agent, desulfurizers, inoculant, nodulizer in the steel industry, foundry, ferroalloy industry, and welding field, etc.
Ferrosilicon is used in the steel industry as deoxidizer
In order to ensure the quality of steel, the molten steel must be deoxidized at the last lap of steel making. Silicon has a great affinity to oxygen, so ferrosilicon is an ideal deoxidizer. The ferrosilicon is not only reacted to oxygen but also reacts to sulfur, so it can remove the sulfur in the molten steel.
Ferrosilicon with a silicon content of 45%-90% is used in the steel industry. Ferrosilicon with 75% silicon is the most widely used in the steel industry for the following reasons:
- 75# ferrosilicon production process is mature and cost-effective.
- 75#ferrosilicon is heavier and not affected when adding.
- 75#ferrosilion with high silicon content, during the reducing period, it release a lot of heat, which can increase the temperature in the furnace.
Ferrosilicon is used in the steel industry as alloying agent
The intension, hardness, and elasticity of steel will be significantly improved by adding a certain amount of silicon. Therefore, ferrosilicon is used as alloy agent for smelting constructional steel (Si 2.81-4.8%), tool steel (Si 0.30-1.8%), spring steel(Si0.40-2.8%), and silicon steel for transformer (Si2.81-4.8%). Ferrosilicon used as an alloying agent can improve the steel quality, reduce cost, and save iron effectively.
Ferrosilicon is used as inoculant and nodulizer
Ferrosilicon is used as an inoculant and nodularizer in the cast iron industry. Cast iron is cheaper than steel, however, its mechanical property is close to the mechanical property of steel, and it is more shock resistant than steel.
Adding a certain amount of ferrosilicon to cast iron can prevent the formation of carbides in iron and promote the precipitation and spheroidization of graphite.
Ferrosilicon is a kind of important inoculant and nodulizer used in ductile cast iron.
Ferrosilicon is used in smelting magnesium metal
Ferrosilicon is used in the smelting process of magnesium metal. The magnesium in CaO.MgO is replaced. Each ton of metal magnesium needs about 1.2 tons of ferrosilicon.
Low aluminum ferrosilicon is used in the steel industry
Compared to regular ferrosilicon, low Al Ferrosilicon is used in the production of low Al steel in the steel industry. In the high carbon steels production process, the use of low-aluminum ferrosilicon can prevent nozzle blockage during continuous casting. Reduced aluminum content will help to avoid surface defects, particularly relevant to mirror finish stainless steel. For the production of tire cords, in which content control is also important, the manufacturer recommends the use of low Al ferrosilicon.
High-silicon ferrosilicon can be used to produce silicone and other products in the chemical industry.
Atomized ferrosilicon powder uses
The atomized ferrosilicon powder can be used in the mineral processing industry. The atomized ferrosilicon powder for heavy media separation for ores, mainly in the separation of iron ores. Heavy medium ferrosilicon, which is a specially smelted ferrosilicon alloy. It has the characteristics of oxidation resistance, high hardness, and strong magnetism.
Compared to other heavy media like magnetite, ferrosilicon has the advantage of greater hardness and of high specific gravity. It can be returned to reuse. When the silicon content in ferrosilicon is less than 13%, the toughness increases, it is hard to grind and easy to oxidize in water, when the silicon content is more than 18%, the magnetic weakness is inconvenient to recover. Therefore, 13%-18% silicon and 87%-82% iron are suitable for use.
In arc welding, ferrosilicon can be used as a coating for welding rods. Atomized ferrosilicon powder is generally made of ferrosilicon with a silicon content of about 45%, which is processed by the water atomization process. The addition of atomized ferrosilicon powder is more helpful to improve the electrode’s deoxidation and reduce the disturbance of oxygen in welding. Atomized ferrosilicon powder is often used as welding skin excipients, generally used as a deoxidizer in welding.
Ferrosilicon is used in the steel industry, ferroalloy industry, chemical industry, and mineral processing industry, etc. With the development of technology, the form of ferrosilicon has become more and more diversified, and the application of ferrosilicon has become more and more extensive. New uses of ferrosilicon will be discovered in the future.