Mechanochemically Synthesized Hexagonal Osmium Diboride (OsB2) Ideal for Industrial Applications

Technology #32894

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The new hexagonal OsB2 can be used to create ceramic coatings for machine parts.
Nina Orlovskaya, Ph.D.
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Zhilin Xie, Ph.D.
Richard Blair, Ph.D.
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Brion Berman
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Mechanochemical synthesis of hexagonal OsB2

US Patent 9,701,542

Mechanochemical synthesis of hexagonal OsB2

US Patent Pending 2014/0219902
Novel High Pressure Hexagonal OsB2 by Mechanochemistry
Journal of Solid State Chemistry, Volume 215, July 2014, Pages 16-21

Hexagonal OsB2: New low-cost, ultra-hard ceramic material increases the stability and reliability of cutting tools and machinery parts

UCF researchers have created hexagonal osmium diboride (OsB2), a new, ultra-hard ceramic compound that, until now, had only existed in the form of a mathematical calculation. With its superior mechanical and functional properties, hexagonal OsB2 is ideal for use as a protective coating on cutting tools, pistons, turbine blades and other machinery parts. In creating the new composition, researchers also developed a novel, inexpensive and scalable method of producing it via mechanochemical synthesis.

Technical Details

The invention encompasses a composition for hexagonal OsB2 and a method of producing the new material by mechanochemically reacting osmium and boron powders using a high-energy ball mill. The compound’s hexagonal lattice structure can have a hardness value of 52±4 gigapascals (GPa) and a Young's modulus (stiffness) range of 561±38 GPa to 585±42 GPa. Ultra-incompressible, the compound undergoes negative thermal expansion at temperatures from 300 to 500 C in the direction of the lattice parameter, and it is stable at temperatures from about -223 C to 875 C upon cooling and heating. The mechanochemical synthesis is extremely energy efficient, with the mill consuming only 100 watts of power to produce 10 grams of material.


  • Harder and more stable than other ceramic materials
  • Producible in bulk powder form
  • Methodology is scalable and provides significant energy and cost savings over other high-pressure and high-temperature solid-state synthesis methods


  • Wear-resistant and oxidation-resistant coatings for cutting tools, blades and other industrial parts
  • Abrasives

Additional UCF ID# 32904