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Lead Production Processes

ECOBAT operates a total of 13 smelters, with a typical annual lead production of around 840,000 tonnes.

Nine of these are based in Europe, three in the U.S.A, and one in South Africa. In South Africa there are also two non-ferrous smelting operations producing zinc and aluminium. Within the Group there are companies producing anodes for the copper and zinc industries in Europe, South Africa and Zambia, whilst others produce lead chemicals, industrial minerals, engineered plastics and polyfoams.

At each of the operations ECOBAT utilises latest cutting-edge technologies such as for example the QSL process to assure highly efficient and environmentally responsible production of the highest quality lead, specifically designed for the lead-acid battery manufacturer. 

ECOBAT lead and lead products are used in a wide range of industries including batteries, buildings, chemicals and nuclear. As a leading producer we are dedicated to delivering the highest quality products to our clients in any industry and business.

All ECOBAT lead smelting operations are certified to the internationally recognised quality standard ISO 9001.


Primary Lead Production

ECOBAT operates the only primary lead smelter in Germany. This smelter in Stolberg relies on the environmentally-friendly and energy-saving technology of the QSL process.

Here, lead is won by charging lead concentrates and secondary raw materials to a single, self-contained aggregate, the so-called QSL reactor. This process is acknowledged world-wide as being one of the most modern, the most environmentally-friendly and the most efficient of its kind.

The Stolberg operation produces high-grade premium lead under the trade-name STOLBERG and more than 100 different lead alloys according to customer specifications, sulphuric acid, silver, copper-lead matte and BERZELIT®-slag.


Secondary Lead Production

Our secondary lead smelters recycle discarded batteries, lead scrap, industrial wastes containing lead and tin and industrial production residues.

Engitec, a state-of-the-art technology which is used for pretreatment, ensures a multistage separation of the components into the different fractions of lead paste, sulphuric acid, plastics and grid metal.

In the following step of smelting in short rotary furnaces, the separated lead grids, desulphurised lead paste, lead scrap, and lead-containing residues are reduced to lead bullion. Besides lead and lead alloys, the secondary lead smelters of ECOBAT also produce polypropylene (PP) chips , Seculene PP and sodium sulphate.

Several of our operations utilise the dressed PP chips and other plastic scrap to produce high-grade PP compounds with the trade name Seculene® - a material which is of the same quality as polypropylene won using primary raw materials. Our UK operation offers high-quality PP Chips for further treatment to the market.

The site in Freiberg, Germany is unique. In cooperation with the other plants of the ECOBAT group, it runs an environmentally friendly incineration plant for hazardous wastes.

ECOBAT Lead Products

  • Lead Alloys

    Lead Alloys

    ECOBAT produces and supplies a variety of special metals and alloys at premium qualities.

  • Soft lead

    Soft lead

    Highly refined soft lead products from recycled sources are an innovation brought by ECOBAT technologies.

  • Branded Lead

    Branded Lead

    Quality production of branded primary and secondary lead

  • Anodes


    The ECOBAT owned RSR Anode brand is recognized throughout the world for high quality electrorefining and electrowinning of non-ferrous metals.

  • Lead Sheets

    Lead Sheets

    The ECOBAT Sheet Division produces specialised Rolled Lead Sheet products at its two plants: BLM British Lead in the UK and Le Plomb Français in France.

  • Sodium Sulphate

    Sodium Sulphate

    During the desulphurization of lead pastes, a sodium sulphate solution is produced. This is then dried in crystallisation aggregates to deliver anhydrous sodium sulphate - a raw material for the glass and detergent industry.

  • Sulphuric acid

    Sulphuric acid

    Sulphuric acid derives from the contact process from the sulphur-containing process gases of the primary smelter.

  • Silver Production

    Silver Production

    Silver is extracted from the by-product auriferous silver by using QSL Technology.

  • Seculene PP

    Seculene PP

    Seculene PP, made solely from secondary raw materials, is an innovative and high quality product.