The use and consumption of boron


Boron ore is a widely used chemical raw mineral, mainly used for the production of borax, boric acid and various boron compounds and amorphous boron powder, an important raw material for metallurgy, building materials, machinery, electrical equipment, chemical industry, light industry, nuclear industry, medicine sector, agriculture and other department. Now the uses of boron is over 300 kinds, and still have new uses is continue to develop. Nevertheless, boron is mainly used in: glass industry, ceramic industry, detergents and agricultural fertilizers, those four purposes above was accounted for about 3 / 4 of the global boron consumption.

The glass fiber manufacturing industry is the most important end-use of boron, occupy about 1/3 of the boron consumption. The sodium borate is a key ingredient of the insulating glass fiber manufacturing, it can reduce the melting point of glass, also can improve the insulation performance of the glass. North America is the largest insulating glass fiber market. The borates in the production of a plurality of continuous strand and textile fibre glass also has an important role, boron oxide can reduce the temperature of liquid glass, improve transparency. It can also weaken the surface tension of the molten glass, make its surface more smoother.

Manufacturing detergent is one of the important uses of boron, especially in Europe. Due to the emergence of alternative products (sodium percarbonate), this market was faced severe competition in recent years. According to the data of metal powder suppliers, the ceramic industrial demand for boron was continuing to grow from 2002, occupy 15% of the global boron consumption. Borate can enhance the gloss and the firmness of the ceramic products, as well as scratch resistant, chemical corrosiveness resistant properties. Borosilicate glass consumed 10% of boron oxide production. Glass added borate can improve the thermal properties and mechanical strength, also improve the performance of resistance to water erosion, and chemical attack. In recent years, due to the emergence of alternative products such as plastic and tempered glass, silicate glass is becoming more and more slowly.

In the metallurgical industry, the boron was used to make a variety of boron-containing alloy. Add a small amount of boron in steel can greatly improve the steel nature, such as when the steel surface saturated by boron, its surface becomes hard, also have excellent corrosion resistance. The ferroboron is an ideal material to be instead of silicon steel for transformer core. In addition, lead, copper, nickel’s boron alloy, boron-containing tin bronze and aluminum bronze were having a wide range of applications.

Use in glass additives, the structure and properties of boron glass use Na2O, B2O3, SiO2 as the basic ingredients called borosilicate glass (also known as heat-resistant glass), with good gloss and transparency, higher heat-resistance, insulation resistance, chemical stability and mechanical properties, can be used in manufacturing advanced chemical instrumentation and insulation materials.

Boron is one of the important microelements for crops. Take up about 8% of the global boron consumption. Most of the agricultural areas in the world were lack of boron, boron used often can increase production, improve crop quality.