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Ferrotitanium

At present, ferrous metallurgy is mostly aimed to increase products quality without rapid expansion of facilities but not to grow material output as the situation has been for several years. It requires to produce structural material consuming less metal, but having higher mechanical properties due to adding alloying elements to the melt. Sometimes such elements can be added in pure form, but as a rule, in the form of ferroalloys, i.e. iron alloys with alloying elements. Ferrotitanium is one of the most widespread and effective ferroalloys.

Ferrotitanium is the alloying addition consisting of iron and titanium with the minimum titanium weight content of 20 % and the maximum weight content of 75 % manufactured by reduction or melting. Manufacture of titanium alloy ingots and mill products also results in generation of metal scrap. Some scrap is graded substandard as it cannot be recycled to charge materials for melting titanium alloy ingots due to oxidation degree, pinches and forge laps. In order to use substandard titanium scrap, the manufacturing process for high-grade ferrotitanium has been developed and mastered. It is based on melting ingots of low-melting eutectic (1085˚) in the titanium-iron system with 65-75 % of titanium. This process allows to melt scrap in the form of solids, bundle and briquetted clippings and loose crushed titanium chips. Obsolete titanium scrap has become more used lately. In order to manufacture ferrotitanium with the specified amount of additions, all titanium scrap is sorted based on alloys and alloy groups.

High-grade ferrotitanium is manufactured by VSMPO-AVISMA Corporation by induction and electro-slag remelting. Induction ferrotitanium is produced in channel-type induction furnaces in the form of a flat taper ingot with the weight of 500-550 kg. Each heat is subject to chemical analysis. Sampling is carried out from liquid metal pool prior to pouring the melt into the mold. Titanium is an active element and takes nitrogen and oxygen as a result of air interaction. That is why it is required to protect the melt from gas saturating.
Electro-slag remelting (ESR) is one of the processes to manufacture quality ferrotitanium. High-grade ferrotitanium is produced by electro-slag remelting in electric furnaces with a copper water-cooled crucible. ESR furnaces use direct alternation current with controlled frequency. Such furnaces are characterized by low inductance, high efficiency factor and uniform heat flow. Charge materials are composed of chips of unalloyed steels and titanium alloys.

Induction furnace melting

Induction furnace melting