Osmium is a rare, dense (22.59 g/cm^3), and extremely hard metallic element that belongs to the platinum group of metals. It is one of the least abundant elements on Earth and is highly valued for its unique properties. Here’s a breakdown of Osmium’s properties:
- Rarity: Osmium is one of the rarest elements on Earth and is found in very small quantities. It is typically found in the Earth’s crust and in mineral deposits alongside other precious metals.
- Durability: Osmium is an extremely hard and durable metal, with a high resistance to wear and tear. It is also highly resistant to corrosion, making it a popular choice in many industrial applications.
- Malleability: Osmium is not very malleable or ductile, meaning it cannot be easily shaped or formed like other precious metals.
- Conductivity: Osmium is a good conductor of electricity and heat, making it useful in various industrial applications such as electrical contacts, spark plugs, and other high-temperature components.
- Beauty: Osmium has a unique silvery-blue color and a high luster, making it a popular choice in jewelry and decorative items.
Osmium is primarily used in industrial applications such as the production of electrical components, fountain pen tips, and instrument pivots due to its high durability and resistance to corrosion. It is also used in the production of specialized alloys, including those used in the manufacturing of military-grade hardware and surgical implants.
Osmium is mainly found in Russia, Canada, and South Africa, with smaller deposits found in other countries such as the United States and Colombia. Osmium is found in nature as an uncombined element or in natural alloys; especially the iridium–osmium alloys .Osmium is 1,500 times more rare than gold but only 30 times more expensive. The price at the beginning of 2023 was 1800$/gram (gold was only 60$/gram).
Overall, osmium is a rare, shiny and valuable metal that is primarily used in industrial applications due to its unique properties. It is found in limited quantities and is highly
sought after by various industries that require its high durability and resistance to corrosion.