HomeGAA in the MediaNewsFelman's West Virginia silicomanganese plant resumes operations


August 25, 2017
By Bob Matyi

Felman's West Virginia silicomanganese plant resumes operations

Felman Production has resumed silicomanganese production on one electric arc furnace at its 105,000 mt/year plant in New Haven, West Virginia, the company confirmed Friday in an email to S&P Global Platts.

The company said the plant "reached [its] normal production rate" on the furnace August 20.

Felman did not elaborate further, but Roy Martin, a United Steelworkers union official familiar with the plant, corroborated the company's statement in a separate email.

Felman has endured disruptions in its production at New Haven for the past few years. The latest incident started July 9 during arcing of the furnace's power buss. Following a successful restart of the furnace July 15, the same furnace experienced another arc in its power buss, which consequently led to a transformer failure three days later.

Last week Felman squelched speculation it had restarted one of the furnaces, saying repairs were still under way.

In November 2015, one of the plant's furnaces was damaged in a "burn through" that left the facility operating with only one furnace.

Felman restarted the West Virginia plant in 2014 after it was shut from June 2013 to July 2014. Felman and Eramet Marietta, operator of a plant in Marietta, Ohio, are the only North American manufacturers of manganese alloy. Miami-based Georgian American Alloys owns Felman.

In June 2015, another Georgian subsidiary, CC Metals and Alloys LLC, temporarily suspended ferrosilicon production at its 100,000 mt/year plant in Calvert City, Kentucky, to reduce inventories that had accumulated as a result of weakened market demand.

An official at the Calvert City plant said Friday in an interview the facility was operating.

Felman's products are distributed through its sister company, Felman Trading Inc. -- an international ferroalloy trading company -- to steelmakers across North and South America.