Graphite electrode is high temperature resistant graphite conductive material. It is made of petroleum coke and pitch coke as aggregate and coal tar pitch as binder. The production process for graphite electrode includes Calcining, crushing ,screening,burdening, kneading, forming, baking, impregnation, graphitization and mechanical processing. The main raw material of graphite electrode production is petroleum coke, Coal tar pitch and Needle coke. The sulphur content of petroleum coke and pitch coke can not exceed 0.5%.
Needle coke, also called acicular coke, is a highly crystalline petroleum coke used in the production of electrodes for the steel and aluminium industries and is particularly valuable because the electrodes must be replaced regularly. Needle coke is produced exclusively from either FCC decant oil or coal tar pitch.It is needed in the production of high-power or ultra-high-power graphite electrodes.Needle coke is an important standard to distinguish regular power graphite electrodes from high power and ultra-high-power graphite electrodes.
Graphite electrodes are used in electric arc furnace (EAF) and ladle furnace (LF) for steel production, ferroalloy production, silicon metal production and smelting processes.Electric arc furnace steelmaking is a major user of graphite electrodes. The output of EAF steel in China accounts for about 18% of the output of crude steel, and graphite electrodes for steelmaking account for 70%-80% of the total amount of graphite electrodes. Electric furnace steelmaking is to use graphite electrode to introduce current into the furnace, and use the high temperature heat produced by arc between the end of the electrode and the charge to smelt .
In addition to excellent mechanical strength, thermal expansion, thermal shock resistance and machinability, the high temperature helps in reducing the entire mass of steel.Growing demand for steel in construction, oil & gas, and automotive industries is expected to boost the graphite electrode market.