The oxide obtained by calcination or roasting is then reduced by either carbon or hydrogen. Carbon is usually used in the form of coke, or carbon monoxide. Not all metallic oxides can be reduced by carbon or carbon monoxide. Thus, in order to extract metal from its ore the method adopted depends on the reactivity of the metal i.e., its position in the metal activity series.
|Metal||Method of reduction of oxide|
|Zn||By carbon reduction method. This metal can be reduced by coke only|
|Fe Pb Cu||By carbon reduction method. These metals can be reduced by coke as well as carbon monoxide|
Reduction Using Carbon (Coke)
This method is used for oxides of moderately reactive metals. Coke is an inexpensive reducing agent and is most widely used.
Reduction Using Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide is a powerful reducing agent. It is used for the reduction of haematite in the blast furnace.