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Production process

Elkem Iceland manufactures and sells silicon metal with around 75% silicon content mixed with iron (FeSi) and is specialized for admixture in the steel industry and in iron foundry worldwide.

Elkem Iceland also manufactures and sells silica dust used as an additive in cement and concrete in Iceland and abroad.

Examples of products containing 75% silicon metal from Elkem Iceland include electric steel for transformers and electric motors used in electric cars, high-strength steel for wind turbines, stainless steel for vehicles, cutlery, balls, bearings, structural steel.

The company meets the criteria for Best Available Techniques (BAT) and Best Environmental Practices (BEP).

In the furnaces, quartz and iron ore react with carbon to form liquid silicon metal. The radiators are semi-closed with a smoke hood. Furnace desorption travels through cooling facilities and smoke treatment facilities, where silica dust is cleaned away by bag filters. The purified desorption is excreted into the atmosphere through the spinal cord of the filter housings. The purified desorption contains, among others, the gases carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide and nitrous oxide. Liquid silicon metal, at a temperature of about 1700 °C, is drained from the furnaces into crucibles. The silicon metal is cast straight into ingots or cast straight out and ground. Dust from the grinding of metallic silicon is recycled by adding it to the silicon metal before casting as an additive. The metal is cooled with water to accelerate solidification and increase its strength. This produces water vapor collected and inflated from the factory. The steam plume is regularly seen from the factory throughout the day in line with the casting of the silicon metal. The ingots are then ground, the material sifted and finally transported abroad by ship to customers. The furnaces are normally operated around the clock all year round with the exception of short maintenance stops.

The Si process drawings

Discover all about the production process in pcitures with this book. The drawings are from Þorsteinn Hannesson, expert at Elkem Iceland.


The production process

To get more information about the production process of Iron Silicon, download this brochure.

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