This article discusses the methods and procedures used to extract, purify, and synthesize tungsten carbide powder, metal, and other refractory carbide/nitride powders used in hard metal production. Selection of powders, additives, equipment, and processes for making ready-to-press hard metal powders is also discussed. The article also provides information on the emerging technologies for tungsten carbide synthesis and binders in hard metal production, such as cobalt, iron, and nickel.
Refractory metals are extracted from ore concentrates or scrap, processed into intermediate chemicals, and then reduced to metal, usually in powder form. This article discusses the raw materials needed and the processing steps for producing pure and alloyed refractory metal powders. The effects of processing conditions on the physical and chemical properties of tungsten, molybdenum, tantalum, niobium, and rhenium powders are reviewed.