The Many Uses of Tungsten and Molybdenum

Written by Economic Development Jobs on January 7, 2019. Posted in Crucibles, Manufacturing, Tungsten products

In today’s industrial world of machines and factories, metal is a key material for most construction jobs and industrial work, and some metals are better than others for a job due to their properties such as melting point or tensile strength. Crucibles, which are metal boats in which materials are evaporated into useful vapors, may be made out of very tough and melt-resistant metals such as a tungsten crucible evaporation boat, or molybdenum crucibles. Industrial workers are bound to have use for a tungsten crucible evaporation boat, but there is more. Some jobs call for metals with very specific properties where no other metal will do, and this is where alloy products are used. A smelting factory and other plants can combine metals in different ratios to create new metals with desirable traits for all kinds of work, and different formulas exist in industry today to create furnace electrodes, pipes, metal bellows, and more. Just what can a tungsten crucible evaporation boat do for workers today?

Tungsten and Molybdenum
Both tungsten and molybdenum stand out as very tough and useful metals, and they have been critical for industry for decades. Tungsten was first discovered as far back as the late 1700s, and it has found many purposes in human manufacturing and tool use ever since the 20th century began. What makes it so useful? This heavy metal is twice as dense as steel is, and it is extremely hard; its carbide falls between 8.5 and 9 on Moh’s scale of hardness, which puts it only a little behind diamonds, which rank 10 for hardness. Tungsten also has the highest melting point of any pure-form metal. It will melt at temperatures at or above 6,170 degrees Fahrenheit, and it also boasts the highest tensile strength of all metals and it has the lowest vapor pressure. This last trait is partly why it is ideal for creating and using a tungsten crucible evaporation boat. This metal is rare, too; only 1.25 grams of it are found for every 1,000 kilograms of the Earth’s crust. All these traits allow tungsten to be used for many hard industrial jobs where any other metal would bend, melt, or turn to vapor. Tungsten crucibles are built to last.

Molybdenum is fairly similar to tungsten, and is also very useful for making evaporation crucibles and more. It was discovered in the late 1700s, like tungsten, and has found many different uses ever since. Although not quite as tough as tungsten, this is still a useful metal, and its melting point is very high, at 4,748 degrees Fahrenheit. It, too, can be made into evaporation crucibles or boats like a tungsten crucible evaporation boat, and it can be useful in furnaces as well. It can be fashioned into electrodes that melt glass in factories, and these molybdenum electrodes require high purity to work well. In particular, their purity should be at least 99.95% pure to work, and this gives the electrodes resistance to discoloration and chemical corrosion or degradation during their work.

Other Metals

A tungsten crucible evaporation boat is very useful for evaporation work in a factory, but not even tungsten or molybdenum can do everything. More specialized jobs call for engineered alloys, which are composites of several different metals in carefully managed ratios for new properties. Metals such as steel, copper, nickel, titanium, and more can be blended into such alloys, and some “recipes” for alloys are created to work for certain kinds of jobs. For example, an underwater pipe in the ocean will face the constant salinity of the seawater, and ordinary metals such as steel or even tungsten may be corroded and compromised by that constant exposure, so instead of a pure metal, an alloy is used, one that is geared to resist the salinity and water. Similarly, the valves, pipes, containers, and other items in a chemical plant will be made of alloys designed to resist corrosion or degradation from constant exposure to the particular chemicals. The same is true of extreme heat or cold; a metal bellows carrying very hot gases or liquids will be made of the right alloy to endure this work where other metals would rupture or melt. Bellows must be flexible and tough without breaking during their work.

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