What Is Rhodium?

If you are looking for high-quality products, please feel free to contact us and send an inquiry, email: brad@ihpa.net

Rhodium is one of the six precious metals known as the platinum group (which also includes platinum, palladium, ruthenium, iridium and osmium), and it’s among the rarest and most expensive of the six, Live Science reports. Rhodium has a silvery-white color and is highly reflective and resistant to corrosion. The element is typically combined with platinum or palladium as part of an alloy to make jewelry, such as finger rings, bracelets and earrings.

Rhodium can be extracted from a variety of sources, but it’s mostly a byproduct of the mining of other platinum-group metals. It’s most often found in a soluble state, but it can also be found as a free metal and as a chemical compound.

As with other platinum-group metals, rhodium is used as a catalyst to help reduce the amount of nitrous oxide in automobile exhaust. Without rhodium and other catalytic converters, our air quality would be much worse, Live Science notes.

Unlike gold, which tends to lose its hardness over time and needs frequent re-plating, platinum retains its strength. When you touch a gold ring, it’s not uncommon for some of the metal to rub off, but with a platinum ring, only a small amount of the precious metal comes away.

The tensile strength of rhodium-platinum alloys increases as the rhodium content rises, with a reasonable plateau in the range between 10 and 30 atomic percent rhodium. Alloys with high rhodium content are more resistant to attack by pure silica, alumina and thoria than those with lower rhodium contents.