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Information @ a Glance

General

  • Ferroalloy refers to various alloys of iron with a high proportion of one or more other element other than carbon.

  • Ferroalloy is used to physically introduce or "carry" that element into molten metal, usually during steel manufacture.

  • The term ferroalloy is used to include any alloys that introduce reactive elements or alloy that introduce reactive elements or alloy systems, such as nickel and cobalt-based aluminum systems.

  • It is used in the production of steels and alloys as a raw material.

Process

  • A variety of furnace types, including submerged electric arc furnaces, exothermic (metallothermic) reaction furnaces, and electrolytic cells can be used to produce ferroalloys.

  • The exothermic process is generally used to produce high-grade alloys with low-carbon content.

  • In the production of ferroalloys in submerged arc furnaces, the primary function of the carbonaceous material (mainly coke and coal) is to act as reductant: to react with the metal oxide to form metal and carbon monoxide.

  • Most ferroalloys and many other metallurgical products, intermediates and waste products arise from smelting processes, which produce molten materials such as ferroalloys, mattes, metals, or slags.

Market

  • Currently markets for atomised ferroalloys are somewhat limited and comprise <1% of the ferroalloy business.

  • South Africa's third-largest ferrochrome producer is setting the pace in the expansion of South Africa's ferrochrome capacity to meet the expected growth in world demand.

  • Production of ferrochrome in India, the third-largest producing country in the world exceeded 0.5 Mt for the first time in 2003/04.

  • Of all the ferro-alloys, the noble alloys ferrovanadium and ferromolybdenum achieved the most spectacular turnaround.

  • Overall, South African ferroalloy producers have adapted well to the strong unexpected upturn in the market.

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