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The largest application for Spodumene is in the production of glasses and ceramics. Lithia is a very powerful flux, and its addition to glass and ceramic mixes can lower melt temperatures and residence time, for substantial energy savings.
Spodumene addition can also improve in-process and final product properties, including viscosity and thermal expansion. Spodumene addition can help make thinner glass or more brilliant glass, such as for perfume bottles. In ceramics (frits, glazes and enamels), lithium lowers thermal expansion and decreases the firing temperature.
Spodumene also finds use in mold fluxes for steel making, investment casting and foundry molds. Continuous casting of steel requires an active flux to maintain the flow of steel from the melt to the molds. Lithium is one of the ingredients used in this application.