Electron-beam furnace

An electron-beam furnace (EB furnace) is a type of vacuum furnace employing high-energy electron beam in vacuum as the means for delivery of heat to the material being melted. It is one of the electron-beam technologies.

Electron-beam furnaces are used for production and refining of high-purity metals (especially titanium, vanadium, tantalum, niobium, hafnium, etc.) and some exotic alloys.[1] The EB furnaces use a hot cathode for production of electrons and high voltage for accelerating them towards the target to be melted.

An alternative for an electron-beam furnace can be an electric arc furnace in vacuum.[2]

Somewhat similar technologies are electron-beam melting and electron-beam welding.


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Technologies, ALD Vacuum. "Electron Beam Melting (EB) - ALD Vacuum Technologies". web.ald-vt.de. Retrieved 2017-10-08.

Ferroniobium is an important iron niobium alloy, with a niobium content of 60-70%. It is the main source for niobium alloying of HSLA steel and covers more than 80% of the worldwide niobium production. The niobium is mined from pyrochlore deposits and is subsequently transformed into the niobium pentoxide Nb2O5. This oxide is mixed with iron oxide and aluminium and is reduced in an aluminothermic reaction to niobium and iron. The component metals can be purified in an electron beam furnace or the alloy can be used as it is. For alloying with steel the ferroniobium is added to molten steel before casting. The largest producers of ferroniobium are the same as for niobium and are located in Brazil and Canada.

LEW Hennigsdorf

The rail vehicle factory in Hennigsdorf, Germany, was founded in 1910 by AEG. Locomotive production began in 1913, and in the 1930s absorbed the work of the August Borsig locomotive factory, being renamed the Borsig Lokomotiv Werke GmbH until 1944. After the Second World War the factory was nationalised in the German Democratic Republic and produced electric locomotives for home use and for export, mainly to Communist Bloc countries under the name Lokomotivbau-Elektrotechnische Werke (LEW).

After German reunification in 1990, the plant returned to AEG ownership, becoming AEG Schienenfahrzeuge GmbH, and then passed through mergers of its parent companies to Adtranz (1996) and then Bombardier Transportation (2001). Under Adtranz's ownership production of locomotives ended, and the site now manufactures diesel and electric multiple units.

Manfred von Ardenne

Manfred von Ardenne (20 January 1907 – 26 May 1997) was a German research and applied physicist and inventor. He took out approximately 600 patents in fields including electron microscopy, medical technology, nuclear technology, plasma physics, and radio and television technology. From 1928 to 1945, he directed his private research laboratory Forschungslaboratorium für Elektronenphysik. For ten years after World War II, he worked in the Soviet Union on their atomic bomb project and was awarded a Stalin Prize. Upon his return to the then East Germany, he started another private laboratory, Forschungsinstitut Manfred von Ardenne.

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