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Photographer: Marcelo Coelho
Photographer: Marcelo Coelho

Nickel is the main focus of our business in Canada, and Vale is the world’s second-largest producer of this important metal.

Nickel is rarely used in its pure form. Instead, it is combined with other metals, especially iron, chromium and copper, to produce alloys that are superior to the individu​al metals. Nickel is used as an alloying element in cast irons, steels (such as austenitic stainless steels) and non-ferrous alloys. It is also used in nickel-based alloys, which are applied to more challenging applications.

Here are just a few places where you’ll see nickel in your everyday life:

  • Bathroom taps and shower heads
  • Batteries
  • Coins
  • Cars
  • Mobile phones
  • Jet engines
  • Cutlery

Photographer: Marcelo Coelho

Want to learn more about nickel?

Nickel for Stainless Steel

One of the primary uses of nickel is to make stainless steel. The nickel products we make that are destined for use in stainless steel are manufactured in plants that meet the highest industry standards, and are produced to the highest quality to ensure consistent and reliable results for our customers.​
They are also designed specifically to be handled in automated charging systems and can be added at various stages in the stainless steel production process. The nickel that we use for stainless steel is produced at our sites in Brazil, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and China. We maintain a worldwide sales and distribution network and provide clients with technical support to fit their needs.

The following products are designed for stainless steel production:

Onça Puma Ferronickel

Onça Puma Ferronickel is an irregularly sh​aped iron-nickel metallic shot produced at our operation in Brazil.​

Product Data S​heet:


Tonimet, from our Matsusaka Refinery in Japan, is a nickel briquette designed for use in the production​ stainless steel, alloy steels and nickel alloys.

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel for Melting

Vale produces three nickel products for melting in Canada. The products are suitable for a variety of demanding applications because they are high-purity and consistent in quality.

Electrolytic Nickel Melt Rounds

Electrolytic Nickel Melt Rounds are produced at our refinery in Long Harbour, Newfoundland. Their consistent chemical composition allows them to be used as a primary feed in a variety of furnace types while their distinctive shape makes them perfect for semi- and fully automated operations. In addition, the solid metallic nature of the rounds helps to minimize breakage and dust. ​

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel Pellets

Nickel Pellets are produced at our refineries in Copper Cliff and Clydach. The Nickel Pellet is a product of the carbonyl refining process. This product’s purity and consistent quality make it suitable for use in the most demanding applications.​

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel Discs

Nickel Discs are produced at the Copper Cliff Nickel Refinery in Sudbury, Ontario, and our Clydach Nickel Refinery in the U.K.

The Nickel Disc is a product of the carbonyl refining process. This process makes one of the purest forms of nickel. The consistent product quality and the distinctive shape (for optimum handle-ability and convey-ability) make nickel discs an industry standard for a wide range of melting applications.

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel Plating

Vale has created the world’s leading product portfolio of advanced nickel plating products. Our products are manufactured in refineries that meet the highest standards and our products are of the highest quality, so that platers are always assured of consistent results. It’s no surprise that Vale is the world’s leading brand for use in electroplating.

Electrolytic ​​​Nickel Plating Rounds™​​

Electrolytic Nickel Plating Rounds™ are designed specifically for electroplating with titanium anode baskets.

Their unique shape makes them work well in baskets and ensures good solution flow and mixing in both regular and shaped baskets of various mesh sizes. With no sharp edges, they are easy to handle safely and produce minimal metallic residues upon dissolution.

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel S-Pellets™

Nickel S-Pellets™ are a high-purity form of sulphur-activated nickel widely used for electroplating with titanium anode baskets.

S-Pellets™ are produced by a unique carbonyl gas refining process at the Clydach Nickel Refinery in the U.K.​

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel P-Pellets™​​​

Nickel P-Pellets™ are screened nickel pellets manufactured through our carbonyl refining processes in Sudbury, Canada, and Clydach, U.K. This product’s purity and consistent quality make it suitable for use in the most demanding applications.

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel Plating Chips

Nickel Plating Chips™​ are an extremely pure and versatile form of plating nickel manufactured in our carbonyl refining processes in Sudbury, Canada and Clydach, U.K. Plating ChipsTM are used by some of the world’s most demanding electroplating applications.

Product Data S​heet:

Nickel Powder

Vale is the worldwide leader in carbonyl nickel powder, which we produce at our Copper Cliff Refinery in Sudbury, Ontario, and at the Clydach Refinery in Wales, U.K. Our high-quality powder is low in iron and sulphur content, uniform and optimized for a variety of applications.

CGNP™ Nickel

CGNP™ is used primarily as a fine nickel material for dissolving applications. These include precursors for electroplating and batteries.

This high-purity nickel, which is non-explosive and non-flammable, is the preferred nickel feed for producing nickel salts including nickel sulphamate, sulphate and chloride to name a few.​

Product Data S​heet:

T123™ Nickel Powder

T123™ Nickel Powder from our Copper Cliff refinery in Sudbury and Clydach refinery in the U.K. is composed of discrete, spiky nickel particles.

Its unique features make it perfect for powder metallurgy or in catalyst applications.

Product Data S​heet:


T255™ is a high-purity nickel pow​der with a fine, three-dimensional filamentary (or chain-like) structure. T255™ is produced at the Clydach Nickel Refinery in the U.K. and it is recognized as an industry standard feed for the production of sintered rechargeable battery electrodes. It is used in numerous other applications as well.​

Product Data S​heet:


Vale Electrolytic Cobalt Rounds are a high purity, primary form of the metal produced by electrowinning. The unique button shape makes this product safe, convenient to handle and easy to transfer from drums.

Electrolytic Cobalt Rounds

Cobalt is an important constituent of alloys with high temperature oxidation, corrosion resistance properties and a critical component of a wide variety of magnetic alloy and hard metals.

Product Data S​heet:

For more information about our Nickel for Stainless Steel products