Dysprosium is highly magnetic, and therefore an important part of permanent magnets that still function reliably even at high temperatures. In nuclear reactors, it is used as a shielding agent and is part of energy-saving lamps. Dysprosium is also used for laser materials, halogen lamps and glass.
Gallium plays a role in many applications. These include, for example, computer chips, electrical engineering, photovoltaics as well as LED and AMOLED. LED and AMOLED lamps are on the rise, the expansion of solar systems is growing steadily globally and high-tech devices such as smartphones and tablets are in constant demand.
As an elementary component of fiber optics, Germanium is highly relevant for the expansion of mobile telecommunications. Thus, the 5G expansion is not feasible without germanium. Germanium is also used for glasses with infrared permeability. In night vision devices and thermal imaging cameras, it is therefore indispensable.
About half of the world’s hafnium production is used for superalloys in aircraft turbines. It allows steels an enormous temperature resistance. Hafnium is also used as a material for control rods in nuclear reactors and it plays a role in laser technology. It is also part of high-performance computer chips.
Indium is used in all touch screens, so it accompanies our daily life. Even normal screens require small amounts of indium for a perfect image. Indium is also used in so-called thin-film solar cells, which increasingly compete with classic silicon solar cells. Indium is also used in nanotechnology.
Neodymium significantly improves the performance of magnets. This is why neodymium magnets can be found wherever high performance is needed in a small space: in wind turbines, in elevators (e.g. in the One World Trade Center), in headphones or electric motors. Wind turbines account for the largest consumption – they require several hundred kilograms of neodymiam per piece.
The main purpose of Praseodymium is beeing part of high-performance magnets. However, it has a number of other applications: Praseodymium, in combination with magnesium, is used to produce high-strength metals for the construction of aircraft engines. Praseodymium is also used for UV eye safety goggles such as welder goggles.
Chart: Tellurium price development*
Tellurium is used in many industries. As an alloying component, it makes metals more corrosion-resistant. It is used as cadmium telluride in thin-film solar cells. Tellurium is also required for the sheathing of deep-sea cables and for fiber optics. Tellurium is also necessary for the vulcanization of rubber.
The most forward-looking use of Terbium takes place in high-temperature fuel cells: here it acts as a stabilizer. It is also found in computer chips and as oxide in fluorescent tubes. But it also has magnetic “talents”: as an alloy component in neodymium-iron-boron magnets, it increases their performance even further.
* The final price of a metal depends on many factors, such as batch size or purity. All charts therefore indicate the price development in relative size.
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