Molybdenum is one of the industry’s sought-after metals. It is similar to chrome and wolfram in terms of chemical properties. It is at the center of functions that are critical for human health. It undertakes critical tasks in the industry as metal. Molybdenum, which plays a role in a wide range from metallic applications to enzymes, contains many properties that can be expected from an element.
Molybdenum; It has superior properties such as high melting and boiling point, high heat resistance, high thermal conductivity, and low thermal expansion. It plays an important role in alloys made with steel due to its strong carbide forming property. Molybdenum generally makes alloys resistant to heat and corrosion and is used in aircrafts, missiles, and nuclear energy industry. It is used as a catalyst in oil refining.
Minerals of Molybdenum
Although the mineral containing about 10 molybdenum is known, molybdenite (MoS2) is the only mineral with economic value. Some other minerals are wulfenite (PbMoO4), powellite (CaMoO4) and ferrimolybdite (Fe2O3.3MoO2.8H2O). It is also obtained as a byproduct of tungsten and copper refining.
Reserve and Production
The region with the most molybdenum reserves is the US state of Colorado. Molybdenum reserves are also found in Canada, Russia, China, Chile, Norway, Mexico, Philippines, and Japan. Molybdenum production in the world is around 100 thousand tons annually. The total molybdenum reserve in the world is estimated to be 17 million tons.
Application of Molybdenum
Molybdenum is a versatile and price-influencing alloying agent used in special steels, pig irons, nickel, cobalt, and titanium-based alloys. Molybdenum is used as an alloying element to reinforce metal, to give strength and hardness, wear-resistant steels, cast irons and ferrous metals. Molybdenum containing alloys are widely used in the construction of stainless steel, tubular and tubular tools, superheaters, steel resistances, obtaining petroleum products and chemical processes. It is used to obtain alcohol and formaldehyde in molybdenum fabric dyeing, which has a wide range of chemical uses. In addition, magnet alloys, cast carbides are used in the production of water and gas-proof materials, and have been added to oils and greases in recent years due to their friction-reducing properties.
The Importance and Economic Value of Molybdenum
Large amounts of molybdenum come from recycling. Scrap is essential to the supply chain. It is predicted that the need for molybdenum will increase in the coming years. However, secondary sources rather than primary sources should be used as they have a large and growing market such as mechanical engineering and automotive, oil and gas, chemical / petrochemical, power generation, processing, aviation, defense, electronics, medical industry.
Looking at the London Metal Exchange molybdenum platts price chart, a decrease is seen in the last year. However, considering the price value, it is not a very serious decrease. It is still valuable.
It is also valuable as a catalyst in refining petroleum. Molybdenum provides big differences and improvements by adding small amounts to the product. It is sustainable element for natural and human life hence of its unique properties.