Oxygen is used in ferrous metal blast (integrated mills), electric arc furnaces (EAF or mini mills) and foundries to improve the economics of making steel at the same time achieving reduced stack emissions and bag house loading. Oxygen helps increase operating temperatures and lessens coke and other carbon consumption. Cutting and lancing speed is increased with the use of oxygen.
For non-ferrous metals such as copper, lead, zinc and aluminum roasting and leaching processes, oxygen use increases recovery and reduces bag house loading and emissions. In many facilities, wastewater treatment use provides additional benefit.
For lime and cement kilns, capacity maximization and lower energy consumption are achieved in addition to reduced emissions.
For recycle reclamation of metals such as lead, oxygen is used to increase the throughput of an existing furnace toward the end of a campaign or in oxy-fuel application to improve the economics of recovery and reduce emissions.