High-performance Metal for Engines: Rhenium

rhenium as physical asset

The price development of rhenium, in per cent.

Market Situation

According to an EU study, rhenium has a value of 7.7 on an economic importance scale of 1-10. The raw material is significantly rarer than the most important precious metals, but not much more expensive in relation to them. Industrial demand is rising and rising; substitution possibilities with other metals are not yet in sight. Forecasts by aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus predict that the number of aircraft worldwide will double by 2030.

According to a study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research, consumption for future technologies will more than double by 2035. It’s no wonder that experts predict one of the highest increases in value of all metals for rhenium.

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properties of rhenium

Rhenium is a heavy metal and can take quite a beating. After tungsten, it has the second highest melting temperature of all metals. The technology metal comes up with numerous superlatives: It has above-average hardness, high density and is superconductive at low temperatures. Yet rhenium is the rarest stable (non-radioactively decaying) element – even gold and platinum occur more frequently. It never occurs alone in nature, but is always a component of other minerals.

applications of rhenium

Rhenium is the preferred metal for high-temperature applications and plays a significant role in petroleum refinery catalysts and in the production of rockets and aircraft engines. Due to its high melting temperature, the metal is the ideal choice for the production of thermocouples and filaments in lamps and X-ray tubes.