Have a Question?

If you have a question you can search for the answer below!

Uses of Osmium

Osmium is a chemical element with the atomic number of 76 and the chemical symbol Os. It is part of the platinum family and is a transition metal. It is blue-gray or blue-black and is the densest naturally occurring stable element on earth. It is known for being hard and brittle and well as extremely durable. Osmium has the highest melting point and lowest vapor pressure of the platinum group. It occurs naturally as an alloy with other platinum metals. It remains lustrous even at high temperatures and is difficult to work. When the metal oxidizes it releases a toxic agent that can cause lung congestion, skin damage, or eye damage. Due to this, osmium is very rarely used in its pure form and is most often combined with other metals. So what is osmium used for in the world today? Read on to find out.

Uses of Osmium
Osmiridium, an alloy of osmium and iridium, is used to create the tips of fountain pens. This is due to its ability to wear pressure over time. Osmiridium tips were also used in record players until longer lasting tips made from sapphire and diamond dominated the market.
Osmiridium is also used in the construction of instrument pivots and electrical contacts sue to its ability to resist wear from frequent use.
Osmium tetroxide, the oxidizing agent of osmium has been used in fingerprint detection. It has also been used for staining tissues for optical and electron microscopy. It is useful in this capacity as it reacts with unsaturated carbon-carbon bonds. This fixes the tissue sample in place and stains it for observation
An alloy of 90% platinum and 10% osmium is used in the creation of surgical implants such as pacemakers and replacement pulmonary values.
Osmium tetroxide is used in chemical synthesis particularly for the Sharpless asymmetric dihydroxylation. This converts the double bond into a vicinal diol.
Osmium has been used to coat mirrors on space shuttles due to its ability to reflect ultraviolet light. Unfortunately it is damaged by the earth’s atmosphere so is only partially effective in this role.
Osmium (VI) and osmium (II) have shown some promise as anticancer drugs but more research needs to be undertaken.

Related Articles

Uses of Platinum

Uses of Ruthenium

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You can use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>