The World Platinum Investment Association (WPIC) said recently that carmakers are accelerating reductions in palladium use and increased use of platinum due to concerns about Russian palladium supplies. However, it still expects a significant surplus in the platinum market this year.
Palladium is used by carmakers in tailpipe emissions systems to reduce carbon emissions. While carmakers prefer palladium for catalytic converters, they are turning to platinum, which is cheaper than palladium, to save costs.
Russia accounts for about 25-30% of the world's palladium supply and 8-10% of its platinum supply.
There is no sign that western sanctions against Russia have restricted palladium exports since the conflict escalated in February, but as the conflict continues, more companies could boycott The Russian metal and governments could impose restrictions.
Platinum is currently trading at about $950 an ounce, about half the price of palladium. Automakers use about 2.5 million to 3 million ounces of platinum and about 8.5 million ounces of palladium each year.
For the year as a whole, platinum supply will be 5 percent lower than in 2021 and demand 2 percent higher, with the automotive sector seeing a 16 percent increase due to increased light vehicle 3D printing metal powder are still very uncertain.
Scientists at Skoltech University in Russia used a 3D printer to create an alloy of two materials whose composition ratios varied from one region of the sample to the next, and the resulting alloy had gradient magnetism, even though none of the initial materials were magnetic.
3D printing, a rapid prototyping method, is maturing for aircraft parts, medical implants and prosthetics, jewelry, custom shoes, and more.
The main advantage of 3D printing is the ability to create objects with very complex shapes that are either too expensive to produce or completely impossible to produce using traditional casting, rolling, stamping, or machining methods. 3D printing speeds up prototyping time and offers greater flexibility in product personalization and the number of batches. Another significant advantage of 3D printing is its low waste.
However, 3D printing has its limitations, requiring objects to be made entirely of homogeneous materials or mixtures. If the composition is different in different parts of the product, it is possible to obtain samples with changing characteristics. For example, A bar made of an alloy of two metals has A variable ratio of composition: one end starts with 100 percent of metal A, then 50 percent of each, then 100 percent of metal B, and so on. Thus, the properties of the obtained materials (including magnetic materials) can vary in a gradient, which makes them potentially useful for the manufacture of motor rotors, magnetic encoder strips, transformers, etc.
Skoltech scientists have researched and made such a kind of material, with the original ingredients A and B being two alloys: aluminum-bronze (copper, aluminum, and iron) and austenitic stainless steel (iron, chromium, and nickel, among others). Both alloys are paramagnetic, which means they are not attracted by magnets. But if you mix them, you get what's called a "soft magnetic material" ferromagnet, which is attracted to a permanent magnet.
The researchers used the two paramagnetic materials to create a gradient alloy. They used an InssTekMX-1000 3D printer, which works by depositing material using directional energy action, feeding a powdery material, and melting it with a laser at the same time. The resulting materials exhibit varying degrees of ferromagnetic properties, depending on the proportions of the components.
The researchers also theorized that the atomic structure of the alloy contributes to the expression of ferromagnetism in the alloy: although both materials have so-called face-centered cubic crystal structures, the combination results in a magnetic body-centered cubic structure.
Gradient soft magnetic alloys can be used in mechanical engineering, for example, in the production of electric motors. The results also show that the method of surface treatment of materials using directional energy action can not only obtain gradient materials using 3D printing but also discover new alloys. The technology is efficient and suitable for the rapid production of large parts.
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New Delhi: India is seeking to increase its purchases of crude oil from Brazil, the country's oil minister said recently after meeting his Brazilian counterpart.
India is the world's third-largest importer and consumer of crude oil. Brazil currently supplies only a fraction of India's crude oil imports.
India's state-owned companies Bharat Petroleum Corp and Oil and Natural Gas Corp have invested in oil and gas exploration in Brazil.
India, which imports about 84% of its crude oil needs, is reducing its import bill by increasing biofuel use, among other things.
India's state-owned fuel retailers are increasing ethanol storage capacity by 51 percent and the country plans to double the biofuel blend in petrol to 20 percent by 2025.
India and Brazil are currently cooperating on biofuels and ethanol.
The prices of many commodities like the 3D printing metal powder are expected to increase in the future.
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