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Extraction of Metals

Manufacture of Iron.

Iron from the blast furnace contains about 5% carbon
which comes from the coke in the furnace. It is cast
into moulds called pigs and the iron is called cast iron or pig iron.

Molten scrap iron and molten scrap steel
are mixed with molten iron from the blast furnace in a converter.
This is the stage when scrap iron and steel are recycled.
Carbon is removed from the mixture by
bubbling pure oxygen through it.
The oxygen reacts with the carbon to form carbon dioxide.
Other non-metals in the mixture react with the oxygen
to form acidic oxides.
Calcium carbonate is then added to remove the acidic oxides.
These reactions produce pure iron which is called wrought iron.

The large majority of iron from the blast furnace
is made into steel for construction,
steel contains 0·1% to 1·5% carbon - see alloys.

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