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Tungsten, W(from the german name "wolfram"), 74, is an extremely hard, dense metal, and has the highest melting point of any pure element.
Pure tungsten is almost exactly the weight of gold, which is about about75% heavier than lead, which, compared to most metals, is very heavy. Tungsten also has a melting point of over 6,000 degrees F, so is useful for high-temperature applications.
Probably the most common and easy to find use of tungsten is in incandescent lightbulb filaments, where it's high melting point keeps it from breaking up at the heat required to produce light. Even newer fluorescent light bulbs have a small tungsten filament at either end, to help the bulb start.
Tungsten is also similar to the element above it, being molybdenum, in that it can be alloyed in small amounts with steel to drastically boost the melting point of the steel, which is useful in gun barrels or cannons.
These are my samples!
Long Light Bulb
This rather long light bulb is commonly used in desk lamps where a long then source of light is wanted, however this one is a bit smaller then usual. Besides the tungsten filament, which is heat resistant and gets hot enough to give off light, there's also support wires holding it in place, made out of molybdenum, and they appear to be held in place with cobalt-blue glass!
Date added(year-month-day):20111130, sample number:86
Tags(Elements in sample):tungsten, molybdenum, vacuum
These are thick tungsten filaments, judging by the shape I believe they where used to evaporate metals in a vacuum, but I'm not sure.
Donated along with some vanadium, iodine, and iron by the very generous David Green, you can find the other samples by searching his name.
Date added(year-month-day):20110913, sample number:68
Tags(Elements in sample):tungsten, david green
The incandescent light bulb has been around for quite awhile, and it's pretty standard around the world to use tungsten for the actual wire that glows red hot, due to tungsten having one of the highest melting points of any(affordable) element on the periodic table. These two bulbs are my smallest and biggest that still retain the "light bulb" look of having a brass base and everything. Small one is something like 0.06 watts, big one is 500 watts and I might add a very unusual find at a flea market, from a guy who got it from a barn sale and had it proudly hanging on his wall since high school.. I owe him one for passing it on to me
Date added(year-month-day):20110802, sample number:52
Tags(Elements in sample):tungsten, vacuum
This is a nice hefty chunk of tungsten metal, one of my heaviest elements to date, and nearly exactly the weight of gold. Thanks again to the company that got me my beryllium for this nice big piece of tungsten.
Date added(year-month-day):20110726, sample number:34
Tags(Elements in sample):tungsten
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