Scale-up of a thermal spray decomposition process for niobium oxide Production


Project description

H.C. Starck Tantalum and Niobium GmbH has developed a "thermal spray decomposition of niobium-containing solution" as a new technology for the hydrometallurgical production of niobium oxides. This process has been evaluated in the pilot scale and is now further developed and transferred into the technical scale. Main features are significantly reduced production costs and a minimized environmental impact due to a sustainable recycling of process chemicals.

The project aim contains the performance of the scale-up, including investigations of the long-term material- and process stability as well as reproducible product quality. In summary, the most important tasks in the next project steps are

  • upscaling, reconstruction and retrofitting of the experimental plant for the demonstration phase
  • investigation of the resistance against corrosion of the construction materials used in the production plant in long-term
  • survey of the process reproducibility with respect to product purity
  • adjustment of the product quality by mechanical post-treatment

The most important benefits of the new technology are

  • significantly reduced production costs
  • increasing product qualities
  • substantial reduction of waste water and disposal sludge
  • sustainable recycling of process chemicals

Niobium oxide from the thermal spray decomposition technology can be used as a precursor in various fields of application. Target applications for the niobium oxide obtained by thermal spray decomposition are: nickel niobium alloys, lead-free piezoceramics and others, e.g. optical industry.

The "ThermoSpray" project consortium consists of three partners (H.C. Starck Tantalum and Niobium GmbH, Clausthal University of Technology and AGH University of Science and Technology) covering business/industry, education and research, thereby combining partners from CLC East and CLC West i.e. Poland and Germany.

Joint partners

  • H.C. Starck Tantalum and Niobium GmbH
  • Clausthal University of Technology
  • AGH University of Science and Technology

    Supported by:

    EIT RawMaterials

    Projekt number 18328



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