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cobalt aluminum is a blue-green pigment used to color glass, ceramics, inks, and paints. It is also used in lithium-ion batteries as an active material on the positive pole. It is produced by calcining a mixture of chromium oxide, cobalt carbonate and aluminum oxide. It also contains small amounts of barium, boron and silicon oxides. cobalt aluminum is found in nickel-bearing laterites and nickel-copper sulfide deposits. It is extracted as a by-product of nickel and copper mining.
Cobalt is an essential ingredient in many alloys due to its good wear resistance, high strength and magnetic properties. It is commonly used in superalloys to provide high reliability and performance under severe operating conditions such as cavitation, erosion, galling, corrosion and abrasion. This is particularly important in the aerospace sector where these properties are critical to passenger safety.
Alloys containing between 5-8 percent cobalt have good resistance to high temperatures, allowing them to withstand extreme operating conditions such as those encountered in jet engines and gas turbines. Examples include Nimonic 90, Waspaloy and other nickel-cobalt alloys. Tool steels containing between 2-12 percent cobalt exhibit improved hardness and cutting performance. Alloys containing cobalt are also used in high-performance magnets, where its ability to withstand temperature changes improves the energy density of the finished product.
Cobalt is also widely used as a catalyst in industrial processes including hydroformylation and hydrogenation of olefins. In this application, it is often alloyed with rhodium. It is also used in the production of neodymium-iron-boron and samarium-cobalt magnets, where it allows the manufacture of very powerful, compact, lightweight permanent magnets with very high coercivity.