Evolution of the Mega-Scale in Ferro-Alloy Electric Furnace Smelting

  • Lloyd Robert Nelson


The historical progression in installed electric furnace smelting capacity of some 1650 calcium, chromium, manganese, nickel and silicon ferro-alloys furnaces is reviewed. Key increases in the inherent installed electrical capacity, often achieved through uprating furnaces, are identified.

Possible factors facilitating such advances are explored, including: specific process engineering and pyrometallurgical enhancements (e.g., improved control over the consistency, size and chemical form of raw materials, extents of preheating and pre-reduction delivered into the furnace; and patterns of feed distribution); furnace electrical configuration (AC or DC; immersed, submerged-, shielded- or open-arc); form of electrode (graphite, self-baking or composite); furnace configuration (circular or rectangular; closed or open and 1-, 3- or 6-electrodes); better engineering and equipment designs (e.g., high-intensity cooling) and state of furnace electrical and metallurgical control systems.

A view is presented on the prevailing state of evolution of the Mega-scale in ferro-alloy smelting and opportunities for still further improvements.


Ferro-alloy Electric Furnace Smelting 


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Copyright information

© TMS (The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lloyd Robert Nelson
    • 1
  1. 1.Anglo American Platinum LtdJohannesburg, 2107South Africa

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