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To obtain the iron in the blast furnace, carbon monoxide reduces iron (III) oxide &...

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NerdyRudy | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 22, 2013 at 9:28 PM via web

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To obtain the iron in the blast furnace, carbon monoxide reduces iron (III) oxide & the hematite ore contains 45% of iron (III)oxide. How many kilograms of hematite ore required to produce 1000 kg (one ton) of iron?  I'm mixed up and can't solve it. Also, can you tell me what is the difference between hematite ore and just iron III oxide?

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ncchemist | eNotes Employee

Posted August 23, 2013 at 1:10 AM (Answer #1)

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First let's look at the chemical equation for the production of iron from iron (III) oxide via a blast furnace.

Fe2O3 + 3CO --> 2Fe + 3CO2

They key piece of information here is that two moles of iron (III) oxide produce 2 moles of iron (Fe).  Now we need the molecular weights of both chemicals:

MW Fe: 55.85

MW Fe2O3: 159.69

Now we work from the end backwards.  Let's convert 1000 kg of iron to moles.

1000 kg * (1000 g/kg) * (mole/55.85 g) = 17905.1 moles Fe

Two moles of Fe are produced from each mole of Fe2O3.

17905.1 moles Fe * (mole Fe2O3/2 moles Fe) = 8952.6 moles Fe2O3

Now convert the moles of Fe2O3 to kg.

8952.6 moles Fe2O3 * (159.69 g/mole) * (kg/1000 g) = 1429.6 kg Fe2O3

So we have calculated that 1429.6 kg of iron (III) oxide are required to produce 1000 kg of iron.  Since hematite contains 45% iron (III) oxide, we divide the number by 0.45 to get the final answer.

1429.6 kg Fe2O3 * (1 kg hematite/0.45 kg Fe2O3) = 3176.9 kg hematite

So 3176.9 kg of hematite are required.

In terms of the difference between the two, iron (III) oxide is a chemical that is a powder.  Hematite is a naturally occurring ore that is made up of the chemical iron (III) oxide.  The main difference is the crystalline structure (arrangement of the individual molecules) of the solids at the atomic level.  Hematite has a crystalline symmetry while iron (III) oxide is an amorphous solid.

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