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Silicon for aluminum alloying

Silicon for aluminum alloying 

Silicon is commonly used as an alloying element in aluminum qualities, both in high quantities (up to 10-12% and in even higher in some cases) and in low quantities to adjust the properties of the final aluminum alloy. Silicon give the Al alloy properties adapted for both its processing and intended end use within as diverse sectors as transportation, construction, engineering, consumer durables, to mention a few.

Understanding the role of silicon in aluminum alloying 

As a critical alloying element, silicon enhances the strength, durability, and heat resistance of aluminum-based materials.

When used in larger amounts, silicon also strongly reduces the melting temperature and increases fluidity and castability of the aluminum alloy, essential for die casting operations. Adding silicon to aluminum is essential for high pressure die casting operations as it strongly reduces the melting temperature and increases fluidity and castability of the aluminum alloy.  Silicon will also make materials even lighter as silicon has lower solid density than aluminum, making parts more cost-effective and fuel-efficient in transportation and aerospace industries.

Elkem is and has been a stable and consistent supplier of stable and high-quality silicon for aluminum alloying. In addition to the regular Si qualities for alloying (as for example our 3003 and 4010 qualities), Elkem is also a supplier of SiLLOY™ brand that is an excellent alternative for applications not requiring Silicon with very low iron content.

For any quality you order from us, we will deliver an alloying material that will meet or exceed your expectations.  

Comprehensive silicon grades 

Today Elkem supply nearly all metallurgical silicon grades normally used for alloying – some examples (but far from all) can be seen in our Silicon 99 Product Data Sheet. Through stable and high quality raw materials, strong process control and a strict focus on quality, Elkem is also supplier of our unique SiLLOY™ brand, which are purpose made qualities with slightly higher and controlled iron content, and low content of e.g. calcium and phosphorus. SiLLOY™ is an excellent choice if very low iron is not needed for your application. SiLLOY™ finds use in both primary and secondary smelters, often within production of sheet ingots, but also other products – including high silicon foundry qualities. It can also be noted that for certain products iron is purpose added in large amounts to the alloy, e.g 4019 and 8022 qualities, containing 5-6% iron. Examples of SiLLOY™ products can be seen in our SiLLOY Product Data Sheet.

Elkem has been delivering silicon to the aluminum industry for several decades, and our versatile and still developing silicon product portfolio is serving both the primary and secondary aluminum industries, especially for use in aluminum foundry alloys (including high-pressure die-casting applications) as 3xx.x and 4xx.x series and in 4000 and 6000 series, mainly for Aluminum ingots.

Elkem has since the start in 1904 made use of Norwegian hydropower and today produces materials with low GHG emissions. We are also committed to further reducing our emissions and to be carbon neutral by 2050 (see our sustainability pages).

Please contact us if you have any questions or requests regarding silicon materials, also outside the given examples. Together we find a solution tailored to your needs.