cutting tools, tungsten china, tungsten carbide, tungsten alloy, tungsten copper
What Is the Hardness of Tungsten Carbide?
Tungsten carbide is a compound made of the elements tungsten and carbon. Its density makes it highly valuable in the military, and the mining and manufacturing industries. Since its creation, tungsten carbide has even been used to make wedding bands.
Tungsten carbide measures a nine on Moh's hardness scale, meaning it is about as hard as corundum, but not as hard as diamond. In order to polish or finish an item made of tungsten carbide, a diamond must be used because any other metal or mineral would crack and break. Only a diamond is hard enough to be able to scratch tungsten carbide. Its density also surpasses the density of titanium.
Composition and Properties
Tungsten carbide is created when tungsten and carbon are combined in equal amounts. In order to create tungsten carbide, the process has to be carried out at temperatures between 1,400 and 2,000 degrees centigrade. The resulting product, tungsten carbide, has an extremely high melting point of about 5,200 degrees Fahrenheit and a low electrical resistance, meaning it readily conducts electricity.
Because tungsten carbide is so hard and dense, the military uses it to make armor-piercing ammunition. It was first used during World War II by German fighters vs. Soviet tanks. Tungsten carbide is also used as artillery ammunition. Smaller caliber weapons, such as machine guns and handguns, also can use tungsten carbide. The use of this ammunition leads to more destruction as few forms of armor are able to stop the bullet.
Tungsten carbide was first used in the 1920s when a German light-bulb company sought ways to make cheaper wiring for the light bulbs. Since tungsten carbide has a high melting point, this compound worked perfectly for light bulbs because the temperatures inside them get very hot. The production of tungsten carbide was perfected by the 1930s and other elements were also added in order to make the compound useful for other applications.
Due to the hardness of tungsten carbide, its creation was a breakthrough for the mining industry. Since it is much harder and denser than steel, tungsten carbide, when used on drills, is able to drill through more rock and have a longer lifetime than steel drills. Tungsten carbide is also used as a machine cutter to cut through steel and other metals.
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