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Information on tungsten: sources, properties and uses

Primary Uses of Tungsten

Cemented carbides, also called hardmetals, are the most important usage of tungsten today.  The main constituent is tungsten monocarbide (WC), which has hardness close to diamond.  Hardmetal tools are the workhorses for the shaping of metals, alloys, wood, composites, plastics and ceramics, as well as for the mining and construction industries. 

Tungsten remains an important partner for tool steels, high speed steels, stellites and creep-resistant steels and alloys.

Tungsten mill products are either tungsten metal products, such as lighting filaments, electrodes, electrical and electronic contacts, wires, sheets, rods etc or tungsten alloys. 

Other applications include a widespread variety of chemical uses.


© 2011 International Tungsten Industry Association
Copyright images courtesy of: (1) Kennametal; (2) Sandvik; (3) Plansee; (4) Voestalpine Giesserei Linz