PRODUCTION AND EQUIPMENT
REACTOR LINING FOR MASTER ALLOY PREPARATION
BY AN ALUMINOTHERMIC METHOD
I. D. Kashcheev,
K. G. Zemlyanoi,
A. N. Rylov,
A. Yu. Raikov,
A. P. Aleshin,
M. V. Trubachev,
and S. A. Vokhmentsev
Translated from Novye Ogneupory, No. 9, pp. 17 – 25, September 2014.
Original article submitted March 17, 2014.
Compositions and manufacturing technology are developed for manufacturing a crucible lining for master al
loy preparation by an aluminothermic method. Slag is the main material used for lining manufacture, formed
during reduction of aluminum metal oxides containing 80 – 84% a-Al
. Charge compositions are devel
oped within which soda and high-alumina cement are tested as binder. The technology is introduced into OAO
Keywords: aluminothermy, corundum, lining, master alloy, energy efficiency.
One method of improving metal quality is introduction
of a master alloy during melting. During active development
of titanium metallurgy the latter as a rule contain rare refrac-
tory metals, i.e., vanadium, zirconium, molybdenum. These
master alloys are prepared by metallothermic reduction of
oxides of the corresponding elements in air or in a protective
atmosphere. Reaction for preparation of metals by reduction
of oxides by aluminum has been used extensively in melting
various master alloys (aluminothermy) . The process is
performed without supply of outside energy, and proceeds by
a reaction (2/y)Me
+ (4/3)Al = (2 x/y)Me + (2/8)Al
and is accompanied by significant changes in Gibbs energy
and liberation of a considerable amount of heat. The temper
ature of the process reaches 2400 – 2800 K, which makes it
possible to obtain slag and metal in a molten condition.
Recently the alumininothermic method for preparing
metals has been improved considerably and is used in differ
ent versions. The role of a melting furnace is fulfilled by the
reagents themselves, which are selected in order that an addi
tional external heat source is not required for continuing a re
action. The advantages of the process are evident, i.e., ab
sence of cumbersome furnace equipment and energy con-
sumption, high rate of the process, and complete transforma-
tion . The adiabatic temperature and heat of some reac-
tions during occurrence of alumininothermic processes is
provided in Table 1, from which it follows that a high tem-
perature develops during combustion, sufficient for melting
both refractory metals and aluminum oxide.
The density of molten corundum r with an increase in
temperature T decreases in accordance with an equation 
r = 3.03 – 1.08 ´ 10
(Ò – 2054) and at the aluminum oxide
melting temperature it is 3.01 g/cm
. The viscosity of a melt
does not exceed 0.02 Pa·sec. High values of viscosity and
density of molten aluminum oxide facilitate master alloy set
tling and concentration in the bottom part of a reactor.
The process is performed in special reactors, i.e., cruci
bles, into which a charge is loaded for the metallothermic
process. Traditionally expensive water-cooled copper cruci
bles are used, and this is connected with considerable heat
loss in the course of a process and incomplete separation of
metal and slag melts. It is more suitable economically and
from an energy viewpoint to use refractory crucibles, for
whose lining the requirements are primarily with respect to
refractoriness, purity (lining material should not contain iron
and components changing master alloy chemical composi
tion and increase wettability of a lining surface from the di
rection of the melt obtained), and also with respect to thermal
Refractories and Industrial Ceramics Vol. 55, No. 5, January, 2015
1083-4877/15/05505-0434 © 2015 Springer Science+Business Media New York
Proceedings of the International Conference of Refractory
Workers and Metallurgists (3 – 4 April 2014, Moscow).
FGAOU VPO Ural Federal University, Ekaterinburg, Russia.
OAO Uralredmet, V. Pyshma, Sverdlovsk Region, Russia.