An Online Resource for information about Molybdenum Powder and Molybdenum Alloys.


History of Molybdenum

Characteristics of Molybdenum

Glass Melting Electrodes

Plasma Spray

Molybdenum in Biology

Molybdenum Metal Properties



Molybdenum Powder and Molybdenum Metal   



History of Molybdenum:

Molybdenum was first discovered in 1778 by a Swedish chemist named Carl William Scheele who thought that he was observing lead while studying a sample of molybdenite. Named from the Greek word "molybdos, which actually means lead, Scheele notice an apparent visual similarity, which upon further analysis, proved to be incorrect. His studies led him to conclude that the ore sample did not contain lead, but a new element, which he named molybdenum after the mineral molybdenite.

Though Scheele is credited with the discovery of molybdenum in its elemental (oxide) form, it was Peter Hjelm who in 1782 first reduced the oxide with carbon to produced the gray metallic powder which he also named molybdenum.

After the initial isolation of molybdenum in 1782, a commercial application for molybdenum was not identified until the early 1900's. Industrial and Military applications required stronger steels with greater resistance to corrosion and damage. The First World War saw the demand for molybdenum rise dramatically as alloyed steels used for transportation and armor plating increased with the war effort. It was found that molybdenum could impart an impact resistance similar to tungsten when alloyed with steel, with less weight. Demand for molybdenum initiated an intensive search for new sources to insure a reliable supply. This led to the discovery of the enormous Climax deposit in Colorado, which began production in 1918. In addition to primary molybdenum mines, molybdenum is also recovered as a byproduct of copper and tungsten mining operations. The metal is produced from purified ammonium molybdate or molybdic trioxide powder through hydrogen reduction at high temperatures.

In its elemental form, Molybdenum is a silvery-white metallic element. Its symbol in the periodic table is Mo and its atomic number is 42. Though molybdenum is chemically stable, it will react with acids.

Molybdenum Ore

Molybdenum Ore

Molybdenite sample

Molybdenite Sample

back to top

History of Molybdenum Characteristics of Molybdenum Plasma Spray
Glass Melting Electrodes Molybdenum in Biology Molybdenum Metal Properties
Molybdenum - a K. Dulin Production