TM0657 : The Climax Molybdenum plant, Stowmarket

taken 10 years ago, near to Combs Ford, Suffolk, Great Britain

The Climax Molybdenum plant, Stowmarket
The Climax Molybdenum plant, Stowmarket
Those of you who have watched the Brainiac - Science Abuse programs on Channel 4 will be aware of Thermite a mixture of iron oxide and aluminium which when reacted is so exothermic (hot) that it will burn through just about anything (when I was at school it was called thermit, I've no idea why the e has been added since).

This plant utilises a variation of that reaction to produce ferro-molybdenum (FeMo) for the alloy and stainless steel industry (molybdenum being a very important alloying element in many grades of steel adding some corrosion resistance and hardness).

Molybdenum trioxide replaces the iron oxide and elemental silicon in the form of Ferro Silicon (FeSi) replaces the aluminium the reaction is therefore:

2MoO3 + 3Si = 2Mo + 3SiO2

Like the thermite reaction the temperature reaches in the region of 2500C.

In the presence of iron, which takes no part in the main reaction, the result is FeMo at around 70% Mo by weight.

Climax Molybdenum have mines in the US and plants across the world LinkExternal link (Archive LinkExternal link ) .

Molybdenum is pronounced mol-ib-den-um.
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TM0657, 23 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 19 March, 2008   (more nearby)
Wednesday, 19 March, 2008
Factory > Factory   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TM 061 578 [100m precision]
WGS84: 52:10.8268N 1:0.8495E
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TM 062 577
View Direction
Northwest (about 315 degrees)
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