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Highlighting the application and benefits of sponge iron

Highlighting The Application And Benefits Of Sponge Iron

September 8th, 2020

Steel and iron are widely regarded as the backbone of global infrastructure. Starting from skyscrapers to roads, railways, bridges, automobiles, etc. use steel and allied products. India is one of the top three steel manufacturers in the world, the steel industry in India plays a crucial role in the growth and development of the modern economy. India’s economic growth is closely linked with the growth of its steel industry. Now let’s talk about why along with the TMT bar companies in India, the sponge iron industry is also so successful.

Sponge Iron, also known as, direct reduced iron (DRI) is a kind of metallic product which is produced from the direct reduction of iron ore to a solid-state (iron). India became the largest producer of sponge iron in the world and accounted for ~24% of the global production in the year 2016 and apart from that India’s crude steel industry showed a dynamic growth at a CAGR of 6.75% between the years 2006-16

Sponge Iron has to be processed to create wrought iron or steel as it is not useful by itself. The sponge is removed from the furnace and then repeatedly beaten with hammers and folded over to eliminate the slag, oxidise any carbon or carbide and weld the iron together. Sponge iron is manufactured today by minimizing iron ore without melting it and this becomes an energy-efficient feedstock for speciality steel manufacturers which is used to rely upon scrap metal.

Benefits of sponge iron –

  • The content of sulfur in sponge iron is less. The direct reduced iron method can use poor quality coal that is unsuitable for ordinary iron production.

  • Sponge Iron is a substitute for steel scrap for the manufacturing of steel through the EAF/IF courses.
  • Sponge Iron acts as a superior feedstock for the electric furnaces used by various factories which allow the factories to use lower grades of scrap or to create higher grades of steel.

Some of the significant applications of sponge iron are as follows –

  1. Sponge iron is a pivotal material used for the production of various steel items like best quality TMT bars, DI pipes and so on.

  2. The steel melting scarp is very useful for mini steel plants as it acts as a feed material.

  3. Sponge Iron is a very appropriate material to be used as a coolant in LD converters of the integrated steel plants.

To conclude, sponge iron is one of the most crucial raw materials which steel companies produce as they are absolutely essential for the production of further iron and steel products.

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