FerroAtlántica investing $400M for Quebec silicon metal factory

New plant will create 345 jobs and produce 100,000 tonnes per year.

PORT-CARTIER, Que. — FerroAtlántica Group will establish its new FerroQuébec subsidiary in Port-Cartier, Que., and will build what it says will be the most competitive silicon metal factor in the world.

The company says the $382 million investment will create 345 direct jobs and produce 100,000 tonnes per year. The factory will be the FerroAtlántica’s and Villar Mir Group’s first industrial site in North America.

The three furnaces are slated for full operation by December 2017, a project that will create up to 230 construction-related jobs and 175 direct jobs to produce 50,000 tonnes annually.

FerroQuébec will include a high-performance wood charcoal plant to produce silicon metal for export, mainly to the North American markets. Silicon is produced in modern electric arc furnaces working that reduce silicon dioxide found in quartz. One of the project’s goals is to maximize the use of renewable materials from forest biomass. Silicon metal is mainly used to lighten vehicles, improve constructions and produce solar energy.

FerroAtlántica Group is a wholly owned subsidiary of Spain’s Villar Mir Group. It is a global producer of silicon metal and one of the biggest producers of manganese and ferrosilicon alloys, which are used mainly in the automotive industry, silicone production, high-performance concrete and solar panel manufacturing.

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