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The amount of magnesium produced world wide in one year is about 600,000 tons. About 70% of this is produced in China, and it is refined using a thermal reduction method. Coal is used as the heat source. It is said that about ten tons of coal is needed to produce one ton of magnesium. This is a very energy consuming process.
It is popularly assumed that we need catalyst such as ferrosilicon in order to refine magnesium. The catalyst is required in order to cut the chemical bond between oxygen and magnesium in magnesium oxide at a relatively low temperature of a thousand and several hundred degrees Celcius. If you factor in energies needed for latent heat to evaporate magnesium and for cutting chemical bond between atoms, the reaction would not occur unless we heat the magnesium oxide up to 20,000 °C. But this also means that as long as the magnesium oxide is given an energy corresponding to 20,000 °C, the bond between its oxygen and magnesium would be broken naturally.

One Comment to “Magnesium needs a lot of energy”

  1. [...] マグネシウム製造には大量のエネルギーが必要 [...]

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