Iron Ore Sintering Process in Steel Manufacturing
Achieve uniform sinter quality at low operational costs
Sinter is the primary feed material for making iron in a blast furnace. The production of high-quality sinter is crucial for assuring consistent, stable furnace productivity with a low consumption of reductants. Sinter quality begins with the proper selection and mixing of the raw materials. Inhomogeneous raw mix can affect permeability and cause an increase in fuel consumption.
Thermo Fisher Scientific offers advanced systems and equipment for all aspects of iron and steel manufacturing, particularly for measuring and controlling sintering process fluctuations, inhomogeneous mixtures, and other parameters that affect productivity, physical and metallurgical quality, and raw material consumption and costs.
Products used in the sintering process and iron and steel manufacturing
Gain economic benefits for the iron ore sintering process and the blast furnace with the Thermo Scientific CB Omni Fusion Online Elemental Analyzer configured for the sinter feed application. Chemical composition is one of the most important parameters for the efficiency of the sinter process. The CB Omni analyzer for sinter measures sinter feed chemistry on-line and provides minute by minute, reliable chemical analysis data to enable control of basicity in real time.
Metallurgical processes often require a combination of elemental and phase analysis for comprehensive quality control. The Thermo Scientific ARL 9900 X-Ray WorkStation combines full XRF and XRD capability in one instrument for complete chemical and phase analysis of mineral raw materials and products in one fast, streamlined process.
Optimize a diverse range of hot metal production processes, from the blast furnace to the galvanizing line. The Thermo Scientific Prima PRO Process Mass Spectrometer provides fast, accurate, comprehensive gas analysis, enabling integrated steel mills and mini-mills to efficiently monitor primary and secondary conversion methods.
Featured video for iron ore sintering products
Why sinter feed composition control matters
Sinter is the primary feed material for making iron in a blast furnace. Sinter is created by mixing iron ore concentrate with several additives such as limestone and silica to control the chemistry and then igniting it at 1200°C in a continuous belt-fed furnace.
Sinter feed composition control is important because the various sinter feed materials are not perfectly characterized and their chemical makeup varies within a batch and between batches.
As the raw feed material chemistry changes, the additive feed rates should be adjusted to smooth out these variations in the sinter strand feed chemistry.
The basicity of sinter feed material is an important parameter in the efficient operation of the sintering and iron making process. Basicity is a calculated chemical parameter composed of the ratio of two or more elements that are known to affect the alkalinity of the material. Stabilization of the basicity of the sinter product delivers benefits not only to the sinter operations but to the downstream iron making process.
The CB Omni Online Elemental Analyzer can help control the sinter feed basicity and provide a more consistent feed to the sinter strand. The benefits of real-time chemical analysis data provided by the CB Omni analyzer include:
- More consistent sinter product—improves sinter quality and stabilizes feed to the blast furnace
- Increased sinter strand and blast furnace throughput due to reduced sinter product variability
- Decreased return fines lowers material handling costs
- Reduced load on laboratory, allowing capacity to be used elsewhere without incurring additional costs
- Net reduction in cost per ton of sinter production
To learn more, read the application note Application of On-line Elemental Analysis for Control of Sinter Feed Basicity
Related categories for the sintering process and iron and steel manufacturing
A belt scale system can monitor production output and inventory, or control product loadout, while providing vital management and operational information.
Flow measurement systems provide continuous, real-time flow measurement of free-falling materials or dense phase, pneumatically conveyed bulk solids.
High-precision weigh feeders help maintain blend consistency and product quality in low, mid-range, and heavy-duty applications.
Continuous level measurement devices penetrate dust, steam, vapors, and other harsh environmental obstacles to provide precise, reliable readings.
The CB Omni analyzer uses Prompt Gamma Neutron Activation Analysis (PGNAA) or Pulsed Fast Thermal Neutron Activation (PFTNA) to determine elemental concentration in bulk materials. The method is deeply penetrative and measures through many centimeters of material, making it an ideal technology for real-time analysis of bulk materials on conveyor belts.
To learn more about PGNAA (prompt gamma neutron activation analysis) and PFTNA (pulsed fast thermal neutron activation), visit the PGNAA and PFTNA Technology page.