Ferrosilicon for steel
Improving quality and performance of steels using ferrosilicon alloys
The growing demand for higher-performance steels is placing ever-greater emphasis on the quality of ferrosilicon (FeSi) alloys used in steel manufacturing plants – and at Elkem, we’re ready to help you make the best decision for your business.
Understanding the needs of steel manufacturers
Although the manufacture of steel goes back centuries, it’s an industry that’s continuing to evolve in the face of customer demand. This places ever-greater requirements on steel manufacturers to improve performance, all while keeping costs in check.
Ferrosilicon, as a major component in steel workflows, has a key role in helping manufacturers to address these challenges – and that’s where products from Elkem lead the field.
The role of ferrosilicon in the steel industry
But first, what roles does ferrosilicon play in steel manufacture? There are four key areas:
- Product performance – The presence of silicon as an alloying element improves various properties of the final steel product, including strength, wear resistance, elasticity and magnetic properties (for electrical steels).
- Slag reduction – For stainless steels, ferrosilicon is used to reduce chromium oxides in the melt back to metallic chromium, and so avoid wastage through slag.
- Deoxidation – For most steels, ferrosilicon is used to scavenge dissolved oxygen, which minimizes the formation of harmful inclusions and so improves the cleanliness of the steel. Reducing the oxygen level also helps avoid the loss of elements such as carbon, manganese and chromium from the steel melt.
- Fuel – Some steel mills add ferrosilicon, mainly at the early stages, so they can ‘burn’ it off using oxygen and so get heat into the furnace, as this can save on electricity costs.
Dedicated ferrosilicon products for a range of steel classes
At Elkem, we’re ready to help you achieve the best possible balance of the above considerations, and determine the optimum grade of ferrosilicon for your steel manufacturing process.
We do this by treating every request as an independent project – we’ll never just suggest a product ‘off the shelf’. The result is a product that’s precisely tailored to your needs, helping you to improve performance and streamline workflows.