Ferrosilicon (FeSi) is an alloy of silicon and iron. The production is based on quartz, iron ore, coal, coke and biocarbon. The alloy is mainly used as a deoxidant and an alloying element in the production of steel and cast iron. FeSi increases strength, hardness, temperateness and corrosion resistance in steel. In 2020, we observed FeSi prices at 870 - 1,360 €/mt, Silicon Carbide prices at 840 - 1,005 €/mt and silicon metal prices at 1,900 - 1,945 €/mt.
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|Name||Price Range 2020||Abbreviation||Size (mm)||Si Content (%)|
|Ferrosilicon||900-1,360 €/mt FeSi||FeSi||2-10 (fines)||75-100|
|Ferrosilicon||870-1,300 €/mt FeSi||FeSi||10-50 (lumpy)||75-100|
|Silicon carbide||840-1,005 €/mt SiC grains||SiC grains||0-10||90-100|
|FeSi Inoculant||1,500-2,000 €/mt Inoculant||Inoculant||0-10||60-80|
|Silicon metal||1,900-1,945 €/mt Si metal||Si metal||10-100||98-100|
|Ferrosilicon Magnesium||1,400-1,685 €/mt FeSiMg||FeSiMg||2-25||40-50|
|Calcium Silicon||1,400-1,600 €/mt CaSi||CaSi||0-10||55-65|
|Ferrosilicon briquettes||900-1,200 €/mt FeSi briq||FeSi briq||40X30||50-75|
|Ferrosilicon Low Al||-||FeSi Low Al||10-50||75-100|
Commercially available ferrosilicon usually contains 15, 45, 75 or 90 wt% silicon. FeSi is supplied to the market in fine (2-10 mm) and lumpy (10-50 mm) form. The fine form is mainly used in foundries that add their alloying agents in the melting ladle. This is because the larger surface area of the alloying agent counteracts the temperature loss in the ladle and the lower dissolution rate.
About 90% of the calcium silicon produced is consumed by the steel industry, where it is used as a deoxidising and desulphurising agent in the production of high-grade steel. Calcium Silicon can be obtained in lumpy or powder form. The most widely used method for integrated steel applications is in the form of cored wire.
Ferrosilicon briquettes are used by steel producers as a deoxidation and alloying element as well as a source of heat in BOF (Basic Oxygen Furnace). The solid compression of the pure material, the lower dust load, and the easier transport make it a possible substitute for standard FeSi.
Silicon carbide is used both by cast iron foundries and in steelmaking. In foundries, it is used as an alloying agent, especially in the form of silicon carbide briquettes for cupola smelting. The silicon carbide is simply dissolved into the liquid iron to supply both the silicon and carbon to the melt. In steelmaking, it is used as a powerful fuel for BOF (Basic Oxygen Furnace), which is why it can also be used as a substitute for FeSi.
A large part of the silicon metal produced is used as an alloying agent for aluminum alloys and is also used in the chemical industry to produce siloxanes and silicones.
Ferrosilicon magnesium is used as an alloying agent by cast iron foundries to produce all types of Ductile Iron. In steel production, it is mainly used for deoxidising the liquid melt. In contrast to pure magnesium alloys, FeSiMg has a considerably lower vapour pressure, which makes it much easier to use and handle.
Inoculants are a group of FeSi-based alloys for treating cast iron melts in iron foundries in order to improve the balance of nuclei for eutectic solidification. There are numerous special inoculants for the individual casting materials, which can contain active metals such as barium, titanium, aluminium, zirconium, and strontium as well as rare earths such as cerium and lanthanum. The addition of the inoculant is ideally done shortly before or during casting.
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