Viscosity and structure evolution of the SiO2–MgO–FeO–CaO–Al2O3 slag in ferronickel smelting process from laterite

J. Min. Metall. Sect. B-Metall. 53 (2) B (2017) 147-154. DOI:10.2298/JMMB150911002L
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The SiO2 fractions in laterite–nickel ores are quite high, thus certain amount of lime should be used as fluxing material to achieve good fluidity and desulfurization capacity in industrial smelting process. However, this operation leads to an additional cost of lime. In addition, the increase of slag volume decreases the effective furnace volume. To avoid such problem, partial reduction of FeO has been suggested. Therefore, the high SiO2, low MgO and FeO and very little CaO slag is formed, which was less studied in the previous literature. Therefore, the viscosity and slag structure are investigated in the present study through FT–IR and Raman analysis methods. Experimental results show that the slag is a mixture of liquid and solid phases under the experimental temperature. The FT–IR and Raman spectra show that the fractions of the complex polymerization structure decrease significantly with the increase of FeO content and slag basicity, resulting in the decrease of apparent viscosity.
Keywords: Laterite–nickel ore; Slag structure; Viscosity; Basicity
Correspondence Address:
X-W. Lv, Chongqing University,
School of Materials Science and Engineering, Chongqing, China
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