The first molybdenum metal application –lead wires in incandescent lamps- appeared in the early days of the 20th century. Molybdenum was chosen for this application because of its stability and strength at elevated temperatures. Since that first application, scientists and engineers have discovered that other properties of molybdenum make it the material of choice for many applications. Some of these take advantage of molybdenum’s strength and stability at high temperatures, just as the first lamp wires did.
However, molybdenum has many other properties that make it attractive for applications outside traditional high-temperature components, including:
High thermal conductivity
High electrical conductivity
Low coefficient of thermal expansion
Resistance to attack by molten metal,
Compatibility with most glass compositions
Thermal shock resistance
High stiffness and strong bonding with glass used in lamps and electronic devices
Because so many of its properties are attractive to engineers and designers, molybdenum metal and its alloys are used in:
Electrical and electronic devices
Materials processing equipment
High temperature furnaces and associated equipment
Thermal spray coatings
Aerospace & defense components
Applications in all these areas require unique combinations of several properties. Molybdenum and its alloys, and composite materials that employ molybdenum metal such as molybdenum foil, provide unique combinations of thermal and electrical conductivity, thermal expansion, high-temperature strength and creep resistance,vapor pressure , environmental stability, and resistance to abrasion and wear that make them ideal. This brochure intends to help the reader understand why this unique material finds use in so many varied applications. It also presents information on machining and fabrication techniques for molybdenum and its alloys.