Steel Micro-alloying with Boron: A Perspective Direction to Reduce the Consumption of Manganese Ferroalloys
Manganese ferroalloys occupy a strategically important place in the total production of ferroalloys, since no steel grade can be made without the manganese addition. Today, the metallurgical complex of Russia is fully dependent on imports of manganese products (raw ore and ferroalloys), so special attention should be paid to the issues of more rational use of manganese. In particular, one should more widely use the methods of direct micro-alloying of steel with manganese in steel-smelting units and ladle-furnaces unit (LFU) and expand the range of high-strength steel with reduced manganese content, micro-alloyed with high-performance elements. Among the micro-alloying elements, a special place is occupied by boron. Its introduction into the metal in the amount of 0.001–0.005% makes it possible to save expensive and scarce alloying elements, in particular manganese, and to provide an increase in the strength of steel without reducing ductility. The results of the studies of the physicochemical properties of slags of the system CaO–SiO2–B2O3–Al2O3–MgO had formed the basis for the technology development for the formation of basic boron-containing slags, that implementation at the LFU in the converter shop of JSC “ArcelorMittal Temirtau” provided the smelting of boron-containing steel economically doped with manganese with low-content of sulfur and high strength and plastic properties. The developed technology provided, depending on the steel grade, a boron content of 0.001–0.008% by weight, low concentration of sulfur in the metal, not more than 0.004–0.014% by weight, and reducing the manganese ferroalloys consumption from 0.5 to 1.4 kg/ton of steel.
Keywords: pipe steel, manganese, sulfur, boron, mechanical properties, structure
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