Manganese distribution between alloy & slag phases in making Fe-Si-Mn alloy from polymetallic sea nodules

Agarwal, Sanjay and Sahu, K K and Godiwalla, K M and Jana, R K (2012) Manganese distribution between alloy & slag phases in making Fe-Si-Mn alloy from polymetallic sea nodules. In: XXVI International Mineral Processing Congress (IMPC) 2012 Proceedings, September, 2012, New Delhi.

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Polymetallic sea nodule is a good source of manganese having 22.3% Mn, 5.4% Fe, 6.14% Si, 1.1% Cu, 1.15% Ni, 0.076% Co & others. These nodules are available in plenty on the sea beds, generated over thousands of years. Nodules mainly consist of manganese dioxide and iron oxide phases and other metals are entrapped in the complex cage of these Mn-Fe oxides phases.World-wide research is going on sea nodules as an alternative future source of many metals, which has led to intensified efforts to develop practical and economical processes for recovery of these metals. Very little attempt has been made world over on manganese extraction from sea nodules. We at CSIR-NML, India have developed a direct reduction smelting process of nodules to recover manganese as Fe-Si-Mn alloy. This alloy is extensively used in the steel industry as deoxidizer and as an alloying element to make different grades of steel. Lab scale experiments were conduced to study the manganese distribution between Fe-Si-Mn alloy and FeO-SiO 2 -MnO-CaO-Al 2 O 3 -MgO slag at different temperatures by varying the basicity of the slag. The direct reduction smelting of nodules is carried out on 1 kg scale in 50 kVA electric arc furnaces to have Cu, Ni and Co alloy and Mn rich slag. This manganese rich slag is further treated in 50 kVA arc furnace to produce Fe-Si-Mn alloy. The composition of Fe-Si-Mn alloy obtained is in the range of Mn: 60-65%, Si: 14-17%, C: 1- 2%, S: 0.03% and the balance iron which is acceptable grade for industrial use. The equilibrium amount of MnO in the final slag is controlled by the temperature of the final melt and the silica, lime, alumina content of the final slag. Increasing the basicity of the slag plays a major role in minimizing the loss of MnO to slag, increasing the amount of SiO2 of the slag, increases the manganese loss in the slag. Increasing the CaO/ Al2O3 ratio of the slag decreases the manganese loss in the slag. Increasing the MgO/CaO ratio of the slag increases the manganese loss in the slag. Thus by adjusting the desired content of the slag, we have maximum recovery of the manganese in the Fe-Si- Mn alloy.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Official URL/DOI:
Uncontrolled Keywords:polymetallic sea nodules, reduction smelting, arc furnace, Fe-Si-Mn alloy
Divisions:Metal Extraction and Forming
ID Code:6103
Deposited On:03 Oct 2012 16:54
Last Modified:12 Feb 2013 14:08
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