Precious Metal Alloys: The Platinum Group

Precious metal alloys emerge from creating innovative alloys from precious metals. The precious metals group or classification includes gold, silver and platinum. An expensive but desirable group of metals, they help to meet the need for components and/or products with special requirements. Thin film technology is increasingly finding ways to apply precious metals and precious metal alloys in a world where miniaturization is of significant importance and precision in such things as electronic devices matters. Of particular interest are the elemental members of the platinum group.

The Platinum Group

The platinum group (PG) forms a close-knit group within the umbrella of precious metals. These rare metals fulfil several aesthetic and functional roles in manufacturing. Members include

* Iridium

* Osmium

* Palladium

* Platinum

* Rhodium

* Ruthenium

PG materials are employed for various reasons in the aeronautic, automotive, chemical refining dental and petroleum refining industries. Their qualities include:

* Catalytic

* Excellent corrosion resistance

* Stability at high temperatures and in oppressive environments

* Malleability

* Aesthetically pleasing appearance

Researchers also use two members of the PG group, platinum and iridium, as crucible materials for the growth of oxides and other single crystals. This is also true for PG alloys.

Platinum Group Alloys

As precious metal alloys, this particular group is often employed in producing precise instruments such as interventional medical devices. PG alloys are also used to produce electrodes, furnace components, low-voltage and low-energy contacts, thermocouples and thick-and thin-film circuits. Common PG alloys, some of them incestuous alloying within the group, include the following:

* Iridium-Platinum alloy

* Palladium-Platinum alloy

* Palladium- Ruthenium alloy

* Palladium-Silver alloy

* Platinum-Iridium alloy

* Platinum – Rhodium-Ruthenium alloy

* Platinum-Ruthenium alloy

* Platinum-Cobalt alloy

* Platinum- Copper alloy

* Platinum-Gold alloy

* Platinum-Molybdenum alloy

* Platinum-Nickel alloy

* Platinum-Tungsten alloy

* Rhodium-Platinum alloy

These metals comprise a portion of a common list of uncommon alloys.

Precious Metal Alloys

Precious metals are those that are rare in availability or unique. They are often costly and hard to come by. While gold and silver top the list of well-known precious metals and alloys, they do stand alone in this category. Members of this category include the platinum group or PG. This group of rare metals is treasured for what it can contribute to a product or component.

Yet, it is not only in its purest form that those of the PG find use. The very precise demands of the latest technology requires improved and enhanced solutions. They seek metals to produce the components that meet the exacting specifications the technology demands to work to its utmost potential. To achieve this goal, fabricators and manufacturers alike turn to precious metal alloys, including those formed by blending the parent, main or base metal – a member of the platinum group with an alloying agent.

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