ADVERTISEMENT
2 /3 FREE ARTICLES LEFT THIS MONTH Remaining
Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.

If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.

ENJOY UNLIMITED ACCES TO C&EN

Materials

Rhenium diboride stands up to diamond

April 23, 2007 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 85, ISSUE 17

[+]Enlarge
Credit: Jonathan B. Levine
8517scicreb2.jpg
Credit: Jonathan B. Levine

With its milquetoast metallic appearance, rhenium diboride (ReB2) probably won't usurp the place of diamond as a girl's best friend. But the superhard material could replace diamond in certain industrial applications, thanks to its ultra-incompressible nature and its relatively simple synthesis. Sarah H. Tolbert, Richard B. Kaner, and coworkers at UCLA prepared the metallic form of ReB2 in bulk quantities under ambient pressure via an arc-melting procedure (Science 2007, 316, 436). The material's average measured hardness is comparable to that of other superhard materials, such as cubic BN or B6O, which must be made at extreme pressures and temperatures. It falls short of being as hard as diamond, but Tolbert and Kaner believe their measurement represents only a lower limit of ReB2's hardness. Rhenium diboride can scratch the surface of natural diamond, however, indicating that it's one of the hardest materials known.

X

Article:

This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Leave A Comment

*Required to comment