Manganese (pronounced) is a chemical element that is designated by the symbol Mn and has an atomic number of 25. It is found as the free element in nature (often in combination with iron), and in many minerals. The free element is a metal with important industrial metal alloy uses. Manganese ions are variously colored, and are used industrially as pigments and as oxidation chemicals. Manganese (II) ions function as cofactors for a number of enzymes; the element is thus a required trace mineral for all known living organisms.
Low Carbon Silico Manganese
Manganese is a gray-white metal resembling iron. It is a hard metal and is very brittle, fusible with difficulty, but easily oxidized. Manganese metal and its common ions are paramagnetic. This means that, while manganese metal does not form a permanent magnet, it does exhibit strong magnetic properties in the presence of an external magnetic field.
Manganese(IV) oxide (manganese dioxide, MnO2) is used as a reagent in organic chemistry for the oxidation of benzylic alcohols (i.e. adjacent to an aromatic ring). Manganese dioxide has been used since antiquity to oxidatively neutralize the greenish tinge in glass caused by trace amounts of iron contamination. MnO2 is also used in the manufacture of oxygen and chlorine, and in drying black paints. In some preparations it is a brown pigment that can be used to make paint and is a constituent of natural umber.
Medium Carbon Silico Manganese
Manganese has no satisfactory substitute in its major applications, which are related to metallurgical alloy use. In minor applications, (e.g., manganese phosphating), zinc and sometimes vanadium are viable substitutes. In disposable battery manufacture, standard and alkaline cells using manganese will probably eventually be mostly replaced with lithium battery technology.
Silicomanganese (SiMn), a ferro alloy with high contents of manganese and silicon, is made by heating a mixture of the oxides manganese oxide (MnO2), silicon dioxide (SiO2), and iron oxide (Fe2O3), with carbon in a furnace. They undergo a thermal decomposition reaction. It is used as a deoxidizer and an alloying element in steel.
An alloy employed for adding manganese to steel and also as a deoxidezer. Silicon manganese usually contains 60 to 70% manganese and 12 to 25% silicon.