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Approximately 80% of vanadium produced is used as ferrovanadium or as a steel additive. Other uses;
Ferrovanadium is a strong, shock resistant and corrosion resistant alloy of iron containing between 1% and 6% vanadium. Ferrovanadium and vanadium-steel alloys are used to make such things as axles, crankshafts and gears for cars, parts of jet engines, springs and cutting tools.
Vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) is perhaps vanadium's most useful compound. It is used as a mordant, a material which permanently fixes dyes to fabrics. Vanadium pentoxide is also used as a catalyst in certain chemical reactions and in the manufacture of ceramics.
In such alloys as:
specialty stainless steel, e.g. for use in surgical instruments and tools.
rust resistant and high speed tool steels.
mixed with aluminium in titanium alloys used in jet engines and high-speed airframes
Vanadium steel alloys are used in axles, crankshafts, gears, and other critical components.
It is an important carbide stabilizer in making steels.
Because of its low fission neutron cross section, vanadium has nuclear applications.
Vanadium foil is used in cladding titanium to steel.
Vanadium-gallium tape is in superconducting magnets (175,000 gauss).
Vanadium(V) oxide (vanadium pentoxide, V2O5) is used as a catalyst in manufacturing sulfuric acid (via the Contact process) and maleic anhydride. It is also used in making ceramics.
Glass coated with vanadium dioxide (VO2) can block infrared radiation (and not visible light) at some specific temperature.
Electrical fuel cells and storage batteries.
Added to corundum to make simulated Alexandrite jewelry
In mineral treatments for anorexia, zinc and vanadium are often used. also, Vanadium often in preparations for diabetes, and dramatically helps in some cases.
The most remarkable of its chemical properties is the readiness with which it combines with nitrogen gas. When added to steel, together with Chromium, it increases the shock absorbency properties.
It also increases the elastic properties of steel and makes it easier to cut.
When Vanadium is being processed it releases yellow vapour.
Coconut water contains Vanadium.
Features and Advantages of the VRB:
Most of the advantages of the vanadium battery are thus due to the use of the same element in both half-cells which avoids problems of cross-contamination of the two half-cell electrolytes during long-term use. This means that the electrolytes have an indefinite life so that waste disposal issues are minimised.
Other advantages of the VRB include:
· High energy efficiencies between 80 and 90% in large installations.
· Low cost for large storage capacities. Cost per kWh decreases as energy storage capacity increases, typical projected battery costs for 8 or more hours of storage being as low as US$150 per kWh.
· Existing systems can be readily upgraded and additional storage capacity can be easily installed by changing the tanks and volumes of electrolyte.
Capacity and state-of-charge of the system can be easily monitored by employing an open-circuit cell.
· Negligible hydrogen evolution during charging
· Can be fully discharged without harm to the battery
· All cells fed with same solutions and therefore are at the same state-of-charge
· No problems of cross-contamination therefore solutions have indefinite life.
· Long cycle life
· Easy maintenance.
· Can be both electrically recharged and mechanically refueled
Electric Vehicle Applications
The development of a suitable power source for electric vehicles is regarded as a top priority by most government and environmental groups everywhere as a means of addressing the serious health concerns associated with high levels of urban air pollution experienced by all major cities around the world. The benefits of the Vanadium Redox system for electric vehicle applications can be summarised as follows:
· Refuelling in five minutes by exchange of electrolyte at a specialised refuelling station allows 24 hour operation of buses, taxis, fork-lift trucks and other vehicles (not possible with any other type of battery system).
· Electrolyte fuel is recharged in the refuelling station using renewable energy or off-peak grid power and is re-used continually
· Simpler, safer, more efficient and much lower cost than gaseous Hydrogen Fuel Cells
· Convenient integration into conventional IC engined fleets – refuelling points may be sited alongside diesel or petrol pumps
· Subject to local market conditions complete Redox fuel systems could be installed for fleet operators and electric fuel could be sold at below equivalent cost for gasoline or diesel
· Silent, emission free operation in electric urban vehicles
Commercial installations have already been completed in several parts of the world for a range of stationary applications and full-scale manufacture has begun in Japan.