, Volume 2006, Issue 2, pp 108-118

Deoxidation with silicon and the control of oxide inclusions in electrical steels

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The oxygen solubility in Fe-Si melts in equilibrium with SiO2 at 1873 K has been determined in a concentration range of 0.1–70 wt % Si. Model alloys are melted in quartz crucibles in an argon atmosphere. The oxygen content in analytical samples is determined by the inert-gas reducing-fusion method after careful sample preparation. The results obtained have been processed using a thermodynamic model that can calculate the oxygen activity and solubility in Fe-Si melts up to 100 wt % Si. The effects of the heating rate and the silicon content on the carbon concentration in carbonyl iron and Fe-Si alloys are studied using the inert-gas reducing-fusion method in the temperature range 1673–2373 K. Oriented electrical steels are investigated using fractional gas analysis. The main forms of oxygen in these steels are found to be silicates, Al2O3, and MgAl2O4.