Tantalum is one among the rarest elements in the earth’s crust. It is a very hard metal with platinum-gray color and a density of 16.6 g/cm3, a value twice that of steel. The material demonstrates high ductility at high temperatures and superior electrical and thermal conductivity. It has a melting of 2,996 °C, which is the fourth highest of all metals. It has found use in a myriad of applications thanks to its unique combination of physical and chemical properties.
Applications of Tantalum
Tantalum is a material with virtually endless potential. It can form an ultrathin oxide coating that can serve as a protective layer. This quality makes it suitable for producing small, high quality capacitors. With superior resistance to chemicals and high temperatures, tantalum provides several benefits to the chemical process industry in the production of pipelines, heat exchangers and reactor coatings. It exhibits a high degree of biocompatibility, which makes it well suited for use in medical technology as a radiographic contrast agent as well as in the production of implants and bone replacement materials.
In the energy and aerospace industries, the addition of tantalum improves the corrosion resistance of alloys used in turbine blades. A suite of tantalum compounds such as lithium tantalates and tantalum chlorides provides excellent material properties, which are crucial for sophisticated industrial applications. In the fabrication of tool and cutting steels containing carbides, the addition of tantalum and niobium carbide increases their stability and performance. Using tantalum oxides, optical lens manufacturers can achieve thinner lens profiles by optimizing the refractive index of their products.
ULTRA 76 tantalum alloy from H.C. Starck Solutions
Tantalum Products from H.C. Starck Solutions
H.C. Starck Solutions fabricates tantalum metal powders and compounds in addition to tantalum semi-finished products and finished components. With these high-quality products, the company serves as a reliable partner for clients in any industry. Consistently high quality and tailored application technology support are the characteristics of the tantalum products offered by H.C. Starck Solutions.
Building on its experience and capability in application technology, H.C. Starck Solutions is well positioned to deliver engineered product solutions to address technically challenging and unique requirements of customers.
Tantalum Recycling System at H.C. Starck Solutions
H.C. Starck Solutions is capable of recovering pure tantalum from virtually any kind of tantalum containing production by-products or scrap, thanks to its sophisticated tantalum recycling processes. The company processes only those raw materials that are sourced from ethically acceptable, conflict-free resources. It follows this procedure for both procuring and processing tantalum. It only procures raw materials that comply the requirements of the OECD ("Due Diligence Guidelines for Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas").
H.C. Starck Solutions and its tantalum processing facilities are accredited as outlined in the Conflict-Free Smelter Validation Program of the independent Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative.
This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by H.C. Starck Solutions.
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