Properties and Uses of Boron Carbide Powder

If you’re not sure about Boron Carbide powder, then you should know that it is one of the hardest materials. The substance is known to bear physical and chemical properties similar to diamonds. Since it appears black or gray in color the powder is often referred as ‘black diamond’. The substance is not only odorless but also insoluble in water.

Properties of Boron Carbide Powder
The compound is hard boron-carbon ceramic and is widely used in industries, in the production of bulletproof vests, and tank armors. With a hardness measuring up to 9.3 on the Mohs scale, the compound is recognized as one of the hardest materials after cubic boron nitride and diamond. The Elastic Modulus and fracture toughness are some of the properties closer to values for diamond.

While the main substance is solid in nature, the powdered form is produced through the chemical reaction between Carbon dioxide and Boron oxide. As the thermal reduction occurs in an electric arc furnace, the powder needs to be refined through different methods. After removing metallic impurities, the powder becomes suitable for commercial use. Get in touch with Boron Carbon suppliers if you’re planning to purchase the substance.

Just like other non-oxide materials, boron carbide is tough to sinter. But, 95 percent density can be accomplished with the help of hot pressing or hot isostatic pressure sintering. To achieve sintering at a temperature between 1900 and 2200 degrees Celsius, the compound has to be mixed with small quantity of Silicon Carbide or fine Carbon.

Quite interestingly, Boron Carbide boasts a high cross sectional area and is capable enough to absorb neutrons. Besides, the substance offers stability when chemicals and radiations need to be ionized. The compound also serves as a p-type semiconductor characterized by hopping-type transport. As the band gap is equivalent to 2.09 eV, mid-band gap states make photoluminescence spectrum more complicated.

As far as the molar mass is concerned, the compound is 55.255 g/mol with a specific gravity of 2.52. The melting point is 2763 °C (5005 °F) while the boiling point is somewhere closer to 3500 °C. Apart from other physical properties, the substance has a density measuring 2.52 g/cm3.

When the substance is in its usual state, the material features a rhombohedral crystalline structure. It is because of this attribute, several variants can be thought without a change in structure. The carbon content may vary till a maximum of 17 percent. To know more about the material, contact a Boron Carbide manufacturer.

Applications of Boron Carbide Powder
Due to its hardness, Boron Carbide functions as an abrasive when materials are to be polished. It is also used in the production of cutting tools and applications like jet water cutting. Since the material is abrasion resistant, it is also used in the manufacturing of nozzles.

With high strength, low density and high elastic modulus the material is used in ballistic armors. The properties help in protecting individuals from high velocity projectiles.

Since Boron Carbide is a neutron absorber, the material is widely used in nuclear reactors. Most of the time, the material is used as pellets.