Pig iron


Pig iron

[
thumb|300px|Two_pig_iron_weights_for_use_in_a_theatrefly system.]

[
puddling process of smelting iron ore to make wrought iron from pig iron, the right half of the illustration (not shown) displays men working a blast furnace, "Tiangong Kaiwu" encyclopedia published in 1637, written by Song Yingxing (1587-1666).]

Pig iron is the intermediate product of smelting iron ore with coke, usually with limestone as a flux. Pig iron has a very high carbon content, typically 3.5 - 4.5%,cite book | last = Camp | first = James McIntyre | coauthor = Francis, Charles Blaine | title = The Making, Shaping and Treating of Steel | publisher = Carnegie Steel Co. | date = 1920 | location = Pittsburgh | pages = p. 174 | edition = 2nd ed. | url = http://books.google.com/books?id=P9MxAAAAMAAJ | oclc = 2566055 ] which makes it very brittle and not useful directly as a material except for limited applications.

The traditional shape of the molds used for these ingots was a branching structure formed in sand, with many individual ingots at right angles to a central channel or "runner." Such a configuration is similar in appearance to a litter of piglets suckling on a sow. When the metal had cooled and hardened, the smaller ingots (the "pigs") were simply broken from the much thinner runner (the "sow"), hence the name "pig iron". As pig iron is intended for remelting, the uneven size of the ingots and inclusion of small amounts of sand was insignificant compared to the ease of casting and of handling.

The Chinese were making pig iron by the later Zhou Dynasty (1122 BC - 256 BC). In Europe, the process did not become common until the 14th century.

Uses

Pig iron is typically poured directly out of the bottom of the blast furnace through a trough into a ladle car for transfer to the steel plant in mostly liquid form, referred to as hot metal. The hot metal is then charged into a steelmaking vessel to produce steel, typically with an electric arc furnace or basic oxygen furnace, by burning off the excess carbon in a controlled fashion and adjusting the alloy composition. Earlier processes for this included the Bessemer process, open hearth furnace, finery forge, and the puddling furnace.

Modern steel mills and direct-reduction iron plants transfer the molten iron to a ladle for immediate use in the steel making furnaces or cast it into pigs on a pig casting machine for reuse or resale. Modern pig casting machines produce stick pigs, which break into smaller 4-10 kg pieces at discharge.

Pig iron can also be used to produce cast iron. This is achieved by remelting pig iron, often along with substantial quantities of scrap iron, and removing undesirable contaminants, adding alloys, and adjusting the carbon content.

Refining

Pig iron is melted and a strong current of air is directed over it while it is being stirred or agitated. This causes the dissolved impurities (such as silicon) to be thoroughly oxidized. The metal is then cast into molds or used in other processes. This is known as refined pig iron, finers metal or refined iron.cite book | last = Rajput | first = R.K. | title = Engineering Materials | publisher = S. Chand | date = 2000 | pages = p. 223 | isbn = 8121919606]

ee also

* Steelmaking
* Wrought iron

References

External links

* [http://www.ironfurnaces.com ironfurnaces.com - a free wiki dedicated to preserving iron furnaces (manufacturers of pig iron)]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pig iron — Pig Pig, n. [Cf. D. big, bigge, LG. bigge, also Dan. pige girl, Sw. piga, Icel. p[=i]ka.] 1. The young of swine, male or female; also, any swine; a hog. Two pigges in a poke. Chaucer. [1913 Webster] 2. (Zo[ o]l.) Any wild species of the genus… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pig iron — Iron I ron ([imac] [u^]rn), n. [OE. iren, AS. [=i]ren, [=i]sen, [=i]sern; akin to D. ijzer, OS. [=i]sarn, OHG. [=i]sarn, [=i]san, G. eisen, Icel. [=i]sarn, j[=a]rn, Sw. & Dan. jern, and perh. to E. ice; cf. Ir. iarann, W. haiarn, Armor. houarn.]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pig iron — n. [see PIG, n. 4] crude iron, as it comes from the blast furnace …   English World dictionary

  • pig iron — pig .iron n [U] a form of iron that is not pure …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • pig iron — pig ,iron noun uncount iron that has not been treated to make it more pure …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • pig iron — ► NOUN ▪ crude iron as first obtained from a smelting furnace …   English terms dictionary

  • Pig iron — Pig iron. См. Чугуная чушка. (Источник: «Металлы и сплавы. Справочник.» Под редакцией Ю.П. Солнцева; НПО Профессионал , НПО Мир и семья ; Санкт Петербург, 2003 г.) …   Словарь металлургических терминов

  • pig iron — noun crude iron tapped from a blast furnace • Hypernyms: ↑iron, ↑Fe, ↑atomic number 26 • Hyponyms: ↑basic iron, ↑cinder pig, ↑mine pig, ↑spiegeleisen, ↑spiegel, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • pig iron — /ˈpɪg aɪən/ (say pig uyuhn) noun 1. iron produced in a blast furnace, poured into special moulds in preparation for making wrought iron, cast iron, or steel. 2. iron in the unrefined state, before conversion into steel, alloys, etc. Also, pig… …   Australian English dictionary

  • pig iron — the product of the blast furnace. The term was derived from the method of casting the bars of the pig iron in depressions or molds formed in the sand floor adjacent to the furnace. These were connected to a runner (known as a sow) and when filled …   Mechanics glossary


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