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Ferromanganese plant in Brens (Cee), Spain Brens - Puerto -BT- 02.jpg
Ferromanganese plant in Brens (Cee), Spain

Ferromanganese, a ferroalloy with high content of manganese, is made by heating a mixture of the oxides MnO2 and Fe2O3, with carbon, usually as coal and coke, in either a blast furnace or an electric arc furnace-type system, called a submerged arc furnace. The oxides undergo carbothermal reduction in the furnaces, producing the ferromanganese. Ferromanganese is used as a deoxidizer for steel.

Ferroalloy refers to various alloys of iron with a high proportion of one or more other elements such as manganese (Mn), aluminium (Al), or silicon (Si). They are used in the production of steels and alloys. The alloys impart distinctive qualities to steel and cast iron or serve important functions during production and are, therefore, closely associated with the iron and steel industry, the leading consumer of ferroalloys. The leading ferroalloy-producing countries in 2008 were Ukraine, China, South Africa and Russia, which accounted for 77% of the world production. World production of bulk chromium, manganese and silicon ferroalloys was estimated as 29.1 million tonnes (Mt) in 2008, a 3% decrease compared with 2007.

Manganese Chemical element with atomic number 25

Manganese is a chemical element with symbol Mn and atomic number 25. It is not found as a free element in nature; it is often found in minerals in combination with iron. Manganese is a metal with important industrial metal alloy uses, particularly in stainless steels.

Iron(III) oxide chemical compound

Iron(III) oxide or ferric oxide is the inorganic compound with the formula Fe2O3. It is one of the three main oxides of iron, the other two being iron(II) oxide (FeO), which is rare; and iron(II,III) oxide (Fe3O4), which also occurs naturally as the mineral magnetite. As the mineral known as hematite, Fe2O3 is the main source of iron for the steel industry. Fe2O3 is readily attacked by acids. Iron(III) oxide is often called rust, and to some extent this label is useful, because rust shares several properties and has a similar composition. To a chemist, rust is considered an ill-defined material, described as hydrated ferric oxide.


Henry Bessemer invented the use of ferromanganese as a method of introducing manganese in controlled proportions during the production of steel. The advantage of combining powdered iron oxide and manganese oxide together is the lower melting point of the combined alloy compared to pure manganese oxide.

Henry Bessemer English engineer, inventor, and businessman

Sir Henry Bessemer was an English inventor, whose steel-making process would become the most important technique for making steel in the nineteenth century for almost one hundred years from 1856 to 1950. He also played a significant role in establishing the town of Sheffield as a major industrial centre.

A North American standard specification is ASTM A99. The ten grades covered under this specification includes;

A similar material is a pig iron with high content of manganese, is called spiegeleisen.

Pig iron iron alloy

Pig iron is an intermediate product of the iron industry, also known as crude iron, which is first obtained from a smelting furnace in the form of oblong blocks. Pig iron has a very high carbon content, typically 3.8–4.7%, along with silica and other constituents of dross, which makes it very brittle and not useful directly as a material except for limited applications. Pig iron is made by smelting iron ore into a transportable ingot of impure high carbon-content iron in a blast furnace as an ingredient for further processing steps. The traditional shape of the molds used for pig iron ingots was a branching structure formed in sand, with many individual ingots at right angles to a central channel or runner, resembling a litter of piglets being suckled by a sow. When the metal had cooled and hardened, the smaller ingots were simply broken from the runner, hence the name pig iron. As pig iron is intended for remelting, the uneven size of the ingots and the inclusion of small amounts of sand caused only insignificant problems considering the ease of casting and handling them.


Spiegeleisen is a ferromanganese alloy containing approximately 15% manganese and small quantities of carbon and silicon. Spiegeleisen is sometimes also referred to as specular pig iron, Spiegel iron, just Spiegel, or Bisalloy.


Evolution of global manganese production, by processes. Ferromanganese production evolution.svg
Evolution of global manganese production, by processes.

In 1872, Lambert von Pantz produced ferromanganese in a blast furnace, with significantly higher manganese content than was previously possible (37% instead of the previous 12%). This won his company international recognition, including a gold medal at the 1873 World Exposition in Vienna and a certificate of award at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Pennsylvania. [1] [2]

Centennial Exposition first official Worlds Fair in the United States, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Centennial International Exhibition of 1876, the first official World's Fair in the United States, was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from May 10 to November 10, 1876, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. Officially named the International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures and Products of the Soil and Mine, it was held in Fairmount Park along the Schuylkill River on fairgrounds designed by Herman J. Schwarzmann. Nearly 10 million visitors attended the exhibition and thirty-seven countries participated in it.

Related Research Articles

Steel alloy made by combining iron and other elements

Steel is an alloy of iron and carbon, and sometimes other elements. Because of its high tensile strength and low cost, it is a major component used in buildings, infrastructure, tools, ships, automobiles, machines, appliances, and weapons.

Cast iron iron or a ferrous alloy which has been liquefied then poured into a mould to solidify

Cast iron is a group of iron-carbon alloys with a carbon content greater than 2%. Its usefulness derives from its relatively low melting temperature. The alloy constituents affect its colour when fractured: white cast iron has carbide impurities which allow cracks to pass straight through, grey cast iron has graphite flakes which deflect a passing crack and initiate countless new cracks as the material breaks, and ductile cast iron has spherical graphite "nodules" which stop the crack from further progressing.

Steelmaking process for producing steel from iron ore and scrap

Steelmaking is the process for producing steel from iron ore and scrap. In steelmaking, impurities such as nitrogen, silicon, phosphorus, sulfur and excess carbon are removed from the sourced iron, and alloying elements such as manganese, nickel, chromium and vanadium are added to produce different grades of steel. Limiting dissolved gases such as nitrogen and oxygen, and entrained impurities in the steel is also important to ensure the quality of the products cast from the liquid steel.

Blast furnace type of metallurgical furnace used for smelting to produce industrial metals

A blast furnace is a type of metallurgical furnace used for smelting to produce industrial metals, generally pig iron, but also others such as lead or copper. Blast refers to the combustion air being "forced" or supplied above atmospheric pressure.

Bloomery early form of iron smelter

A bloomery is a type of furnace once used widely for smelting iron from its oxides. The bloomery was the earliest form of smelter capable of smelting iron. A bloomery's product is a porous mass of iron and slag called a bloom. This mix of slag and iron in the bloom is termed sponge iron, which is usually consolidated and further forged into wrought iron. The bloomery has now largely been superseded by the blast furnace, which produces pig iron.

Ferrochrome alloy of chrome and iron, most commonly used in stainless steel production

Ferrochrome, or Ferrochromium (FeCr) is a type of ferroalloy, that is, an alloy between chromium and iron, generally containing 50% to 70% chromium by weight.

Ferrovanadium chemical compound

Ferrovanadium (FeV) is an alloy formed by combining iron and vanadium with a vanadium content range of 35%-85%. The production of this alloy results in a grayish silver crystalline solid that can be crushed into a powder called "ferrovanadium dust". Ferrovanadium is a universal hardener, strengthener and anti-corrosive additive for steels like high-strength low-alloy steel, tool steels, as well as other ferrous-based products. It has significant advantages over both iron and vanadium individually. Ferrovanadium is used as an additive to improve the qualities of ferrous alloys. One such use is to improve corrosion resistance to alkaline reagents as well as sulphuric and hydrochloric acids. It is also used to improve the tensile strength to weight ratio of the material. One application of such steels is in the chemical processing industry for high pressure high throughput fluid handling systems dealing with industrial scale sulphuric acid production. It is also commonly used for hand tools e.g. spanners (wrenches), screwdrivers, ratchets, etc.

Aluminothermic reaction

Aluminothermic reactions are exothermic chemical reactions using aluminium as the reducing agent at high temperature. The process is industrially useful for production of alloys of iron. The most prominent example is the thermite reaction between iron oxides and aluminium to produce iron itself:

Direct reduced iron

Direct reduced iron (DRI), also called sponge iron, is produced from the direct reduction of iron ore to iron by a reducing gas or elemental carbon produced from natural gas or coal. Many ores are suitable for direct reduction.


Ferrosilicon is an alloy of iron and silicon with an average silicon content between 15 and 90 weight percent. It contains a high proportion of iron silicides.

SAE steel grades Standard Specification for Steel, Standard Grades according to ASTM A322 and similar norms.

The SAE steel grades system is a standard alloy numbering systems for steel grades maintained by SAE International.

Cornwall Iron Furnace

Cornwall Iron Furnace is a designated National Historic Landmark that is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission in Cornwall, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania in the United States. The furnace was a leading Pennsylvania iron producer from 1742 until it was shut down in 1883. The furnaces, support buildings and surrounding community have been preserved as a historical site and museum, providing a glimpse into Lebanon County's industrial past. The site is the only intact charcoal-burning iron blast furnace in its original plantation in the western hemisphere. Established by Peter Grubb in 1742, Cornwall Furnace was operated during the Revolution by his sons Curtis and Peter Jr. who were major arms providers to George Washington. Robert Coleman acquired Cornwall Furnace after the Revolution and became Pennsylvania's first millionaire. Ownership of the furnace and its surroundings was transferred to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1932.

Ferro Alloys Corporation

The Ferro Alloys Corporation Limited (FACOR) was floated in 1955 by the house of Sarafs and Mors to become the first major producer of ferromanganese in India.

Deoxidization is a method used in metallurgy to remove the oxygen content during steel manufacturing. In contrast, antioxidants are used for stabilization, such as in the storage of food. Deoxidation is important in the steelmaking process as oxygen is often detrimental to the quality of steel produced. Deoxidization is mainly achieved by adding a separate chemical species to neutralize the effects of oxygen or by directly removing the oxygen.

Nikopol Ferroalloy Plant

Nikopol Ferroalloy Plant is a producer of Manganese Ferroalloy and related material located in Ukraine.

Begunjščica mountain

Begunjščica is a ridge mountain in the Karawanks. It rises from the western Smokuč mountain pasture to St. Anne on its eastern side. The mountain has three main peaks, the highest being Big Peak. The western Middle Peak lies a little lower, and the lowest is Begunje Mount Vrtača. Its southern slopes rise over the Draga Valley. The ascent of the mountain is relatively easy and possible throughout the year. In the winter and early spring conditions are favourable for ski touring.


  1. Hočevar, Toussaint (1965). The structure of the Slovenian economy, 1848-1963. Studia Slovenica. p. 30. COBISS   26847745.
  2. Vilman, Vladimir (2004). "Von Pantzove gravitacijske žičnice na Slovenskem" [Von Pantnz's gravity ropeways in Slovenia]. Mednarodno posvetovanje Spravilo lesa z žičnicami za trajnostno gospodarjenje z gozdovi [International Symposium Cable Yarding Suitable for Sustainable Forest Management](PDF) (in Slovenian). pp. 9–33.

Further reading

United States Geological Survey Scientific agency of the United States government

The United States Geological Survey is a scientific agency of the United States government. The scientists of the USGS study the landscape of the United States, its natural resources, and the natural hazards that threaten it. The organization has four major science disciplines, concerning biology, geography, geology, and hydrology. The USGS is a fact-finding research organization with no regulatory responsibility.