Science, technology and medicine
Tungsten after first use (2016, in %)
Approximately 65 percent of the tungsten produced worldwide is processed into tungsten carbide, which is used in the manufacture of carbide tools. In addition, tungsten is mainly used as an alloying element.
In sport, tungsten is used for high-quality darts barrels and for tips of special arrows in archery. In hammer throwing, tungsten was also used for hammer heads to reduce air resistance and the radius of rotation. In addition, tungsten plates are used as additional weights in Formula 1 in order to achieve the prescribed minimum weight of Formula 1 cars. It has also been used in sailing for some time in the keel bombs of large racers. The water resistance is greatly reduced by the greater density compared to conventional materials such as lead or cast iron. There are also rackets in tennis that have tungsten fibres incorporated into their carbon frame braiding. In this way, specific areas of the racket frame can be additionally stabilized in order to increase playing precision. In golf, tungsten is sometimes used as a counterweight for smaller, more precise club heads.
In fly fishing, fishing lures are weighed down with tungsten beads drilled through and pushed onto the hook leg so that they descend faster and deeper. When fishing, especially spinning, tungsten is used as an environmentally friendly and even better sinking substitute for lead.
Ring (jewellery) made of tungsten carbide
Since the beginning of the 21st century, tungsten carbide, mistakenly referred to as tungsten, has also been processed into jewellery (tungsten jewellery), e.g. rings. This can easily be determined by hardness and density. WC has the Mohs hardness 9.5, tungsten only 7.5. So far all jewellery parts on the market are made of tungsten carbide.