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What is molybdenum silicide and its properties?

What’s molybdenum silicide, you ask?

Molybdenum silicide

This inorganic compound has the chemical name MoSi2; it is a gray metallic liquid. While it’s insoluble with most acids, it can be dissolved in nitric and hydrofluoric acids. Although the radii are similar, electronegativity and the radii of both atoms is very close. It also has properties comparable to those found in ceramics and metals. To prevent further oxidation, molybdenum silicide forms an electricallyconductive layer that acts as a silica passivation on the surface. It’s used as a high-temperature antioxidant coating material, integrated electrode film, electrical heating elements, embedded electrode films, structural materials and reinforcing agent for composite materials.

Prepare molybdenum silicide

MoSi2 can also be made by the reaction of Si and Mo. Here is the reaction formula


Physical properties of the molybdenum silicide

MoSi2 (intermediate phase) is the most silicon-rich in the MoSi binary alloy system. This is an intermetallic Dalton-type compound that has a fixed structure. The material is both a metal- and a ceramic, and it has exceptional performance at high temperatures. It is resistant to high temperatures, with a oxidation rate temperature of above 1600. That is comparable to SiC. MoSi is used primarily as a heating element.

MoSi2 molybdenum has metallic bonds that bond to silicon. Silicon is covalently bound to it. It is not soluble with mineral acids (including aqua regia), but it can be dissolved in a mix of hydrofluoric acid and nitric acid. Additionally, it has high-temperature resistance to oxidation.

High-temperature burning dense quartz glass (SiO2) is used to create a protective layer on the surface. This protects against the continual oxidation or molybdenum silicide oxidation in the oxidizing environment. SiO2 protective films are formed when temperatures exceed 1700°C. They thicken at the melting point of 1710°C and fuse into SiO2 drops. Because of the surface expansion, it loses some of its protective properties. If the element is constantly exposed to an oxygenizing agent, the protective coating is formed as a protective film. You should note that the element is not safe to be exposed for long periods of time to low temperatures due strong oxidation.

Application of silicides made from molybdenum

In the fields of high-temperature antioxidants coating materials and electric heating elements, molybdenum siliconicides are used.

1) The chemical and energy industries: gas burners, electric heating elements and high temperature heat exchangers to atomic reactor device, gas burners, thermocouples for high temperatures and their protection tube, melting vesselcrucibles (for melting of sodium, lithium and lead, bismuth, and other metallic metals).

2) Industry of microelectronics: MoSi2 as well as other refractory metallic silicides like Ti5Si3, WSi2, TaSi2, TaSi2, among others. important candidates for large-scale interconnecting line film and integrated circuit gates.

(3) Aerospace industry. It is a highly-researched and extensively used anti-oxidation coating material for high temperatures. It’s used as a turbine engine component, including blades, impellers tailpipes and combustors.

(4) Automobile industry: Supercharger rotor for turbo engines, body and spark plugs, as well as engine parts.

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