Carbothermic reduction of niobium concentrate

Abstracts:

Ferro Niobium is produced by aluminothermic reduction of the niobium concentrate. However, the niobium concentrate has impurities, such as phosphorus, lead and tin, which can contaminate the Ferro Niobium. Therefore, the niobium concentrate must be refined before aluminothermy. The carbothermic reduction of niobium concentrate was investigated as a method to promote the impurities removal. The carbothermic reduction of niobium concentrate was investigated in self-reducing briquettes at temperatures between 1100 and 1250°C, aiming to promote the reduction of impurities, mainly phosphorus. The reduction was carried out using graphite as carbonaceous material. After reduction, the briquettes were evaluated in scanning electronic microscope. It was observed that the iron oxide of the niobium concentrate was simultaneously reduced with oxides of phosphorus, lead and tin, producing an alloy Fe-Sn-P, with phosphorus content up to 20%. Based on the results it was obtained an apparent activation energy of 296.3 +/- 29 kJ/mol.


Reference:
FERREIRA NETO, João Batista; TAKANO, Cyro, BENEDUCE NETO, Flavio. Carbothermic reduction of niobium concentrate. In: ANNUAL MEETING DO TMS; SYMPOSIUM ON HIGH-TEMPERATURE METALLURGICAL PROCESSING, 2010. Proceedings… The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society, 2010.

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