Levasil® colloidal silica for high temperature materials

Nouryon is a leading manufacturer of colloidal silica and offers a broad range of Levasil® colloidal silica for refractory materials. Our product ranges Levasil® FO and Levasil® FX are perfect binders for both fiber-based (RFB) and non-fiber-based applications.

Levasil® FX401 - a colloidal silica dispersion with unique properties

Colloidal silica is an excellent binder for refractory materials with decades of proven performance enabling faster and safer installations. However, using standard colloidal silica as a binder in magnesia containing systems has so far not been possible due to a very rapid setting.

Our new development, Levasil® FX401, solves the issue with rapid setting as well as two other main challenges for magnesia-based refractory, hydration and durability. Thus this new binder technology enables magnesia refractory materials with unique performance and lower carbon footprint.

Worker with protection gear pouring over melted metal in ceramic mold

Key performance benefits

Excellent workability

Prevent hydroxylation & improve drying efficiency

Increase durability

Unique microstructure

Read our latest publication on "Novel colloidal silica technology for in situ spinelization in MgO-containing refractories” 

Our latest publication "Novel colloidal silica technology for in situ spinelization in MgO-containing refractories” shows that Nouryon's Levasil® FX401 colloidal silica binder gives a protective coating, preventing hydroxylation. Also, the unique crystallization behavior of the material resulted in a microstructure with large cubic spinel crystals, indicating a more durable material with longer lifetime and enhanced resource efficiency.

This article was written by Prof. Rafael Salomão, University of São Paulo, in collaboration with Nouryon, just like previous publications on this topic. It was published in golden-access form and can be downloaded here (or via DOI: 10.1590/1980-5373-MR-2023-0438).

Our Technical Development Manager Andreas Sundblom is currently following-up on our recent launch of Levasil® FX401 colloidal silica. If you would like to discuss this publication or our full range of colloidal silica for high temperature materials contact us or Andreas on LinkedIn.

Levasil® FX401 colloidal silica prevents hydroxylation and improves drying efficiency

Using Levasil® FX401 as the binder in magnesia containing systems helps with preventing hydroxylation, reducing the potential volumetric expansion. After curing, the reactions between silica and magnesia (MgO) form a packed hydrophobic coating over MgO particles surfaces hindering further hydroxylation. This prevents their volumetric expansion.

It also results in a safer and more efficient drying behavior leading to energy savings and a lower carbon footprint.


image showing dramatic improvement of form stability in refractory material containing colloidal silica binder in the mixture compared to without.

Unique microstructure and increased durability

The final structure attained after sintering (1500ºC) of the spinel formulations presents high flexural strength, and a microstructure comprised of large and regularly-shaped spinel crystals surrounded by a thin amorphous silica layer.

SEM/EXD images of a spinel forming system containing Levasil® FX401 illustrate the unique crystallization behavior and excellent binder performance achieved (see images to the right). The high-density structure will contribute to a more durable material. 

Electrom microscopy image of refractory material showing repartion of Aluminum, Silica and Magnesium

A game changer - New Levasil® colloidal silica binding system for magnesia refractories

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Related applications

Get in touch!

For more information about our Levasil® colloidal silica products, please contact our experts. We look forward to hearing from you.



If you prefer to call us you can reach us at:

China, Shanghai: +86 21 22205000
Brazil, Jundiaí: +55 11 45894800
Germany, Cologne: +49 221 995850
India, Mumbai:+91 22 6842 6700
Japan, Tokyo:+81 356436001
Singapore: +65 6635 5327; 6635 5203
Sweden, Bohus: +46 31 587000
Taiwan - Greater China, Taichung: +886 4 23270520
USA, Houston: +1 312 3206109

Levasil® is a registered trademark of Nouryon in several countries worldwide.

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