Molycorp’s facilities at Sillamäe have well-established quality control systems, including the best analytical laboratory operating in metallurgy field in the Baltic States.
Quality control is present in every stage of our production at Sillamäe – from the acceptance of raw materials and reagents to technological control, control of waste and finished products, storage of raw materials, reagents, and products.
Current technological control is done by computerized automatic control systems utilizing various sensors and express analysis of samples. Several processes have fully automated control systems. Sampling is done according to approved sampling charts.
Technological control samples are analyzed every half-hour and then returned to process. Acceptance control samples, samples of finished products and waste materials are prepared, sent to analytical laboratory and analyzed during maximum period of two days. Duplicates of product samples are kept for three months from date of shipment.
Silmet’ s analytical laboratory is equipped with apparatus that allows performing analyses with high degree of precision (up to 1 ppm level). The laboratory utilizes 105 analysis methods for determination of approximately 70 elements and various ions. Analytical techniques used include:
- laser diffraction particle size analyzer (Microtrac S3000)
- emission spectrometry (Spectro ICP)
- atomic absorption (AAS Hitachi)
- X-ray fluorescence
- X-ray diffraction
- gaseous impurities determination in solid materials (LECO)
- determination of specific surface (Microtrac)
- sieve analysis
- Kjeldahl technique
- ionometric techniques
Our laboratory utilizes modern sample preparation techniques – including microwave sample leaching with scales of 0.00001 g precision level. Certified Standard Reference materials are used.