Tungsten


Welding electrodes
Incandescent lamp filaments
Rocket propulsion engines
Cutting and drilling tools

Among its compounds can be stressed out the carbide (WC), representing about 40% of the world production of the metal. This compound is extremely hard and resistant, being used in the production of saw blades and other sharp utensils, abrasives, trunnions, ball-point pens, etc. The second largest application is in the production of special hard steels, with extreme resistance to corrosion and improved behavior at high temperatures. There happen to exist about 300 commercial ferrous alloys, with variable amounts of tungsten. It is also an important constituent of several non ferrous alloys, such as those formed with cobalt and chromium, with high hardness and resistance to abrasives, and still those formed with nickel, tantalum or niobium. All these alloys can be used in machinery pieces where high mechanical resistance is required.

The most important applications of the pure metallic tungsten are the production of filaments for bulb lamps, electric contacts, arch-welding electrodes, heating elements in high temperature furnaces, valves for reaction propellers used in missiles and airships, etc.

Among its compounds are the calcium and magnesium tungstates, used in fluorescent lamps, the disulfide used as lubricant at high temperatures and catalyst in the oil industry, the trioxide and the "tungsten bronzes" (by-products from the reduction of tungstates of alkaline and earth-alkaline metals), in the production of paints, etc.