Five years ago, the company initiated a research and development project for silicon metal powders at its Innovation Center in Sabón (Spain), initially setting up a pilot plant as it continued to enhance and refine the purity of the powders to service attractive and growing applications by collaborating with strategic partners.
Ferroglobe's Innovation Center is equipped with cutting edge proprietary technologies in silicon melting, silicon metal purification, and silicon powder particle size reduction, which have proven to be capable of generating silicon powder of extremely high purity. The innovative industrial process is efficient and follows clean production process, with no secondary chemical flow, ensuring sustainability throughout the entire value chain.
In reaching this level of high purity and based on the positive feedback from the strategic partners of the company, Ferroglobe takes another step towards its goal of being recognized as one of the market's leading suppliers of high-purity silicon for batteries and other advanced technologies, actively participating in the semiconductor's clean technology, and advanced mobility markets. The strategic importance of Ferroglobe's battery silicon project was already recognized in 2021 by the European Commission, including it in the IPCEI European Battery Innovation (EuBatIn).
To supply state-of-the-art Silicon for anodic material, Ferroglobe is collaborating with some of the leaders in this sector and start-ups developing innovative siliconbased solutions. To name a few, currently under MoU, Ferroglobe is providing high purity silicon powder to:
- E-magy, producer of a unique nano-porous silicon, enabling high-energy silicon-dominant batteries;
- Sicona, who has pioneered a simple & robust production process for highperformance silicon-graphite-carbon composite anode materials;
- Granode Materials, which is developing a new graphene-based anode material;
- Altech who is advancing into feasibility study for the construction and operation of a 10,000tpa Silicon/graphite alumina coating plant in Germany.
- Ferroglobe has also signed a cooperation agreement to develop the Siliconcontaining Anode technology with Advano, specialized in the manufacturing and processing of advanced Silicon materials for Li-ion batteries in EV and consumer electronics industries.
- Ferroglobe is now entering a new phase in its high-purity silicon metal powder project, which will involve industrial collaboration between its plants in Sabón (Spain) and Montricher (France), where first large industrial capacity has successfully started.
Dr Benoist Ollivier, chief technology & innovation officer at Ferroglobe, commented: "Our company has succeeded in producing a silicon metal powder that stands out for its extremely high purity, and now we must go one step further. It is time to start offering the market our industrial capacity for global production of this critical material for the advancement of innovative, cost effective, and low carbon footprint solutions to accelerate the energy transition".