Boron Carbide


Boron Carbide is a well reputed abrasive material. Its hardness is just below diamond and for this reason it is extensively used as a lapping agent in place of diamond. In the finishing of semiprecious gems such as ruby, synthetic corundum etc. boron carbide powder achieves 60% of the efficiency of diamond paste. It is also used for polishing high speed steel and carbide tip tools and wire drawing dies. It is reported in the literature that the development of hard metal cutting tools and high speed steels could not have been possible without the availability of boron carbide as a grinding and tapping medium. 

Sintered boron carbide shapes are finding wide applications as sand blasting nozzle and hard ceramic bearings. 
In aerospace industry, boron carbide, due to its capability to generate tremendous amount of heat   (12400 kcal/kg) in combination with oxygen is finding use as a rocket propellant. 
In nuclear industry it is well accepted as a control and shielding material for neutron due to its favourable absorption characteristics. 

Production of Boron Carbide in a finely divided form broadly consists of four major steps.

  • Reduction of boric acid and carbon mixture in a graphite resistance furnace.
  • Communication of as-reduced boron carbide.
  • Purification of the ground boron carbide powder by leaching and washing.
  • Filtration, drying and classification.


The product obtained, in general will be suitable for abrasive industry. The recovery in the process is well over 85%.


For further information please contact

Bhabha Atomic Research Centre,
Trombay, Mumbai- 400 085
Tel : 091-022-25505337/25593897
Fax : 091-022-25505151
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