General Electric GEnx Aircraft Jet Engine

Refractory Metals in Aerospace & Defense

Founded on an unparalleled period of innovation, the aerospace and defense (A&D) markets are now among the largest and most lucrative industries worldwide. It is difficult to value the net worth of the global market with any accuracy, but the US aerospace and defense sectors recently logged a record yearly revenue of US $760 billion. This is largely attributed to continued digital transformation and innovation despite mounting geopolitical uncertainties and tensions. Refractory metals are central to these key growth drivers, providing the solutions for low-risk innovations in flight control systems and ballistics.

In this blog post, H.C. Starck Solutions explores the use of refractory metals in aerospace and defense.

Aerospace & Defense: Added-Value with Refractory Metals

Refractory metals are a critical class of materials in high-performance industrial and manufacturing spaces. They comprise a core group of five elements: niobium (Nb), molybdenum (Mo), rhenium (Re), tantalum (Ta), and tungsten (W). While the definition as to what qualifies as a refractory metal varies – with some areas of materials science and metallurgy considering a wider specification than others – these five elements are the definitive refractories.

What unites these materials is their exceptional resistance to extreme temperatures and unique physical and chemical properties. Of the five refractory metals, niobium has the lowest melting point (2750°C) while tantalum has the lowest Vickers hardness rating (873 MPa). These are already extraordinary properties that only improve throughout the refractory metals family, spanning up to a melting point of 3422°C and a maximum Vickers hardness of 4000 MPa.


Tungsten is the go-to refractory metal for aerospace and defense solutions, exhibiting the highest melting point of any metal known to man: 3422°C (6192°F). Combined with its high density (19.3 g/cm3) and extreme hardness, it is routinely used to fabricate critical products that assist in-flight stability or provide powerful penetration for advanced ordinance. Molybdenum and tantalum are also utilized in similarly demanding military and civil aviation applications.

For more information on the materials utilized in aerospace and defense, browse our Products by Industry.

Tantalum is essential in the generation of explosively-formed penetrators (EFP), while molybdenum heating elements and hot zones are used in a range of heat treatment processes designed to elevate the physical properties of components intended for use in aerospace and defense. Niobium is another critical refractory that is taking aerospace to new heights, providing a novel material solution for rocket nozzles and flame shielding applications.

Many financial analysts argue that defense spending and growth in commercial aviation are counter-cyclical, which means the sector often thrives despite economic downturns or recessions. Others believe that there is no such thing as a perceptible periodicity in the sector’s market value. A consistent fact, however, is that innovation in aerospace and defense is often accommodated by new material solutions. Composites were instrumental to the earliest successes of the aviation industry; now refractory metals are providing similar innovations to meet growing global demand.

Among the many innovations in aerospace has been the onset of additive manufacturing (AM) for generating high-performance components. If you would like to learn more about how AM is increasingly utilized in aerospace applications, read the article Additive Manufacturing for Space Applications.


Refractory Metals from H.C. Starck Solutions

H.C. Starck Solutions specializes in the generation of high purity refractories and alloys for challenging areas of application. We offer a broad range of tried-and-tested products for aerospace and defense, helping manufacturers meet the ongoing demand for high-performance solutions. Our product line includes:

  • WHA Balance Weights for Airplanes and Helicopters
  • Nb C-103 Sheet & Nozzles for propulsion
  • TZM forging dies for engine blade production
  • WHA shielding components for spacecraft
  • Mo, Ta and WHA missile components

If you would like any more information about using refractory metals in aerospace and defense settings, simply contact a member of the H.C. Starck team today.


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H.C. Starck Solutions Expands 3D Printing Capabilities

Press release originally published on PR Newswire.

Coldwater, MI – H.C. Starck Solutions, a global leader in refractory metals, is excited to announce the addition of a powder-bed fusion printing system to its growing list of Additive Manufacturing (AM) capabilities. H.C. Starck Solutions collaborated with Renishaw, a global engineering technologies company, by acquiring one of their Laser Powder Bed Fusion AM systems to optimize the processing of their refractory alloys. Additive Manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, is now being used to produce metal parts and H.C. Starck Solutions is a technology leader in applying AM to refractory metals, including tungsten, tantalum, niobium and molybdenum.

Powder-bed fusion is a revolutionary tool in enhancing the performance of many refractory metal parts for demanding applications in medical imaging, biomedical implants, space propulsion and chemical processing. The Renishaw equipment will be used to produce complex metal parts in support of H.C. Starck Solutions’ customers in the aerospace, defense, medical, and industrial markets. The powder-bed fusion printer will be located in their manufacturing facility in Coldwater, Michigan, which is the same facility that produces their AM powders.

Renishaw’s powder-bed fusion system offers the best combination of high precision and geometric flexibility of any current AM technique,” says Andreas Mader, Chief Executive Officer of H.C. Starck Solutions. “Combining our knowledge of AM technologies with our expertise in refractory metals will provide our customers with superior solutions to their business needs. The addition of the powder-bed fusion technology from Renishaw is only one of many steps H.C. Starck Solutions is taking to expand its AM portfolio in support of this growing sector.

An AM-manufactured molybdenum (Mo) pump impeller.

H.C. Starck Solutions and Renishaw continue to share their respective knowledge and expertise to process the materials efficiently and with superior metallurgical performance.

About H.C. Starck Solutions

H.C. Starck High Performance Metal Solutions (H.C. Starck Solutions), a leading global manufacturer of metal powders, complex metal parts and additively manufactured parts made from refractory metals, is an independent business unit of H.C. Starck Group with operations in the United States, Europe and Asia. H.C. Starck Solutions supplies its fabricated products to growing industries, including electronics, aerospace, medical, chemical processing, glass melting and commercial heat treating. They deliver product solutions to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), end-users and aftermarket manufacturers.

About Renishaw

UK-based Renishaw is a world-leading engineering technologies company, supplying products used for applications as diverse as jet engine and wind turbine manufacture, through to dentistry and brain surgery. It has 5,000 employees located in the 36 countries where it has wholly-owned subsidiary operations.

Throughout its history, Renishaw has made a significant commitment to research and development, with historically between 13 and 18% of annual sales invested in R&D and engineering. The majority of this R&D and manufacturing of the company’s products is carried out in the UK.

The Company’s success has been recognized with numerous international awards, including eighteen Queen’s Awards recognizing achievements in technology, export and innovation.

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Process Engineer – Coldwater, Michigan

Process Engineer – Coldwater, Michigan

We are currently sourcing candidates for a Process Engineer in our Coldwater, Michigan facility.

Position Summary

Responsible for the development, monitoring and improvement of all manufacturing processes within the Coldwater Hot Works production areas. Ensures that all processes accurately reflect the documented production practices, costing is adequate and quality requirements meet or exceed customer specifications.

Essential Functions & Responsibilities

  • Develop, document, and oversee the manufacturing process for respective product lines in cooperation with manufacturing and quality control to ensure that all applicable standards are met or exceeded
  • Evaluate new processes, manufacturing methods and equipment, as required, to improve process capabilities, material yields, and develop new products
  • Provide technical support to customers in an effort to define product/process requirements or troubleshoot existing materials or applications
  • In conjunction with quality control and quality assurance to resolve nonconforming material issues, customer complaints, complete and implement corrective and preventative measures, perform FMEA or other statistical analyses to support all quality initiatives.

Required Experience & Qualifications

  • 3-5 years’ experience in a similar or related metals manufacturing environment

  • Experience with project management

  • Thermo-Mechanical processing of metal mill products, Combustion systems and process equipment control systems preferred

  • Bachelor’s Degree in metallurgical or mechanical engineering

  • 5 years’ experience in a similar or related metals manufacturing environment

  • Working knowledge of MRP/ERP planning tools

  • Experience with SPC, Lean Manufacturing and SAP

  • Proficient in using MS Office software Ability to communicate proficiently both orally and in writing using the English language

  • This position may require the applicant to be licensed under certain United States laws and regulations

  • Competencies: results orientation, entrepreneurial orientation, analytical thinking, taking initiative, effective communication, influencing others, self-confidence

Note: This position will involve access to export-controlled technical data and/or technology and the position requires either U.S. Person status or the ability to obtain an export license from the appropriate government agency for Non-U.S. Persons.

To Apply for this Position

H.C. Starck offers a highly competitive compensation along with excellent benefits, including Medical, Dental, Vision, 401(k) with company match. Please email your resume with your salary expectations to

H. C. Starck Solutions is an Equal Opportunity Employer supporting diversity in all our business practices.

Download the full job specification here

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Machining Operator – CNC Grinding. Hermsdorf, Germany

Machine Operator – CNC Grinding. Hermsdorf, Germany

We are currently sourcing candidates for a Machining Mechanic CNC Grinding in our Hermsdorf, Germany facility.

Essential Functions & Responsibilities

  • Set-up, operation and programming of CNC controlled grinding machines

  • Production of precision metal parts to specification and drawing on schedule and to quality standards

  • Dimensional and visual inspection of the manufactured parts according to the specified test plan using suitable measuring and testing equipment, as well as measuring and testing methods

  • Documentation of the results of the quality inspection and management of all production documents (batch accompanying papers, set-up sheets, etc.)

  • Participation and/or initiation of maintenance and inspection work in the event of malfunctions occurring within the scope of the work task

  • Participation in the development of grinding technologies for new parts

Required Experience & Qualifications

  • Completion of a 3.5-year apprenticeship as a machining mechanic specializing in grinding

  • Knowledge of the operation and programming of STUDER and Kellenberger CNC grinding machines

  • Familiarity with the use of measuring machines

  • An independent and reliable way of working

  • Responsibility and quality awareness are a matter of course for you

To Apply for this Position

In addition to a varied range of tasks in an international team, we offer you qualified induction and various opportunities for further training. You can expect a fixed salary and other social benefits. To apply, please email your resume with your salary expectations and earliest possible starting date to jennifer.engelhardt@hcstarcksolutions.

H. C. Starck Solutions is an Equal Opportunity Employer supporting diversity in all our business practices.

Download the full job specification here

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Accountant, part-time – Hermsdorf, Germany


H.C. Starck High Performance Metal Solutions (H.C. Starck Solutions) ist ein weltweit führender Hersteller von Metallpulvern, komplexen Fabrikationen und additiv hergestellten Teilen aus Refraktärmetallen und eine eigenständige Division der H.C. Starck-Gruppe mit Aktivitäten in den USA, Europa und Asien. H.C. Starck Solutions liefert seine hergestellten Produkte in wachsende Industrien, darunter Elektronik, Luft- und Raumfahrt, Medizin, chemische Verarbeitung, Glasschmelzen und kommerzielle Wärmebehandlung. Wir liefern Produktlösungen an Erstausrüster (OEMs), Endverbraucher und Hersteller von Ersatzteilen.

Zeigen sie uns, was in ihnen steckt

  • Eigenständige und eigenverantwortliche Verbuchung von Geschäftsvorfällen auf Bilanz-, sowie Aufwands- und Ertragskonten auf der Basis des HGB und der IFRS-Regularien
  • Umfassende Erfassung aller buchhaltungsrelevanten Sachverhalte inklusive der Erstellung von Monats- und Jahresabschlüssen
  • Rechnungsprüfung, Durchführen und Überwachung des elektronischen Zahlungsverkehrs
  • Überwachung der Finanzstrukturen (Cashflow, Kontenclearing, Verwaltung des Kreditmanagements)
  • Standortübergreifende Kommunikation mit externen Gesellschaften und Ansprechpartnern
  • Kreditorenmanagement
  • Erstellung des Kennzahlenreportings sowie Statistiken und Auswertungen

Zukunft braucht erfahrung

Sie verfügen über eine Zusatzqualifikation zum Bilanzbuchhalter aufbauend auf einer abgeschlossenen Ausbildung zum Industriekaufmann/frau, Wirtschaftskaufmann/frau oder alternativ über ein erfolgreich absolviertes Studium der Betriebswirtschaftslehre, idealerweise mit Schwerpunkt Controlling/ Rechnungswesen oder vergleichbares. Neben Ihrer einschlägigen Berufserfahrung in der ganzheitlichen Abbildung von Monats- sowie Jahresabschlüssen rundet Ihr Profil Kenntnisse im Konzernreporting ab. Ihre guten Englischkenntnisse in Wort und Schrift ermöglichen Ihnen eine problemlose Kommunikation im internationalen Unternehmensumfeld. Sie haben einen proaktiven und zuverlässigen Arbeitsstil und sind ein kommunikations- und kontaktstarker Teamplayer.

Machen sie es möglich

Bewerben Sie sich unter Angabe Ihrer Gehaltsvorstellung und Ihres frühestmöglichen Eintrittsdatums online auf unserer Website oder direkt unter Begeistern Sie uns mit Ihrem gesunden Pragmatismus und Ihrem Mut zur Veränderung.

Laden Sie hier die vollständige Stellenbeschreibung herunter.

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Business Intelligence Analyst – Finance – Newton, MA

Business Intelligence Analyst – Finance

We are currently sourcing candidates for a Business Intelligence Analyst – Finance position in our Newton, MA facility. This position will support the Director, Financial Planning & Controlling with financial business analysis by compiling, managing, and analyzing financial information which will serve as the basis for strategic decisions and planning processes for the global H.C. Starck Solutions division. Furthermore, the role will be a major contributor to the successful implementation of the financial consolidation and reporting system OneStream and will act as a main contact for its business users.

Essential Functions & Responsibilities

  • Drive the design and development of financial data gathering and management processes in order to deliver accurate financial results and sound financial analysis; maintain and improve complex spreadsheets by implementing reporting efficiencies
  • Customize and administer the financial consolidation and reporting system OneStream; provide technical guidance for local OneStream users
  • Design and build intuitive and reliable dashboards that provide actionable insights for various functional departments, including sales and executive leadership teams
  • Support and advise the budgeting and forecasting activities of the division; adapt processes to accommodate changing company requirements; examine contingent processes to propose and initiate improvements as needed
  • Prepare ad hoc analysis and provide data to assist the preparation of management reporting in support of headquarters and division management; assist with special projects
  • Develop strong working relationships with business teams, including accounting and sales, to gain additional insights for analysis and data validation and understand their evolving information needs

Required Experience & Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business, Finance, MIS, Mathematics, Statistics, Economics, or similar quantitative/analytical fields
  • Affinity for handling large data amounts accurately and a passion for helping others use it to drive informed business decisions; excellent attention to detail
  • Strong analytical skills and aptitude for problem solving, including data analysis and validation; ability to exercise independent judgment and to identify and improve processes
  • Expertise in MS Excel; Visual Basic skills a plus
  • Experience with SAP and financial consolidation and reporting systems (Hyperion or OneStream) beneficial
  • 2+ years of relevant experience
  • Required competencies include: ability to work with details; analytical thinking; teamwork and cooperation; integrity and trust; result orientation; taking initiative; managing change; effective communication

To Apply for this Position

H. C. Starck offers a highly competitive compensation along with excellent benefits, including Medical, Dental, Vision, 401(k) with company match. Please email your resume with your salary expectations to

H. C. Starck Solutions is an Equal Opportunity Employer supporting diversity in all our business practices.

Download the full job specification here

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