MMK Devises Iron Recovery Technology

28 March 2013 (09:46)

March 28, 2013. Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works (MMK) elaborated an original method of direct iron recovery from titanium magnetite ores and other iron-containing raw materials using a promising third-generation metallurgical technology known as ITmk3, MMK Prospective Development Department’s leading expert Nikolai Panishev announced at a press conference in San-Antonio, USA.

A project targeted at search for promising ways of processing oxide-bearing and titanium magnetite ores that would result in extraction of various components was launched at the enterprise as early as two years ago. At the moment, MMK provides less than a third of the iron ore supplies its needs itself, at Maly Kuibas deposit. Some of the iron ore stuffs also come from recycling smelter slag. MMK reports the mastering of this new technology will mean the company will be able to process ores with high magnesia, titanium, and vanadium content and to improve the enterprise’s own raw resource base: the titanium magnetite ore deposits in Chelyabinsk Region alone are estimated to contain several billion tons of ores.

The use of titanium magnetite ores in traditional blast-furnace-based metallurgy is limited because of the high titanium dioxide content that results in high viscosity. This is why it was decided to apply the breakthrough ITmk3 technology that was elaborated in Japan. This direct iron-recovery technology is a process consisting of a one-step operation within a furnace. Unlike all the other direct iron recovery technologies, ITmk3 ensures recovery, smelting, and separation of slag within 9-12 minutes rather than a few hours. What is more, the expensive coke can be replaced with very ordinary types of coal, including steam coal and even brown one.

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