Molybdenum Chemical LCI

The molybdenum chemicals covered by this LCI include:

  • Ammonium dimolybdate
  • Ammonium heptamolybdate
  • Pure molybdenum trioxide (both via sublimation and chemical routes)
  • Ammonium octamolybdate
  • Molybdenum disulphide
  • Polymolybdate
  • Sodium molybdate dihydrate

The LCIs are cradle-to-gate, encompassing the processes that include extracting resources from the earth through the point at which the chemicals are ready for shipment to customers. Transportation of the finished product from the shipping dock to a customer is not accounted for. Packaging of the products is included.

The LCIs are based on current data and technologies on the processes, energy and materials consumed, and environmental outputs. Six IMOA member companies participated in this study, with data representing over 90% of western world production of molybdenum chemicals. Data came from sites spanning three continents - Europe, North America, and South America – and a typical range of operating configurations were included and averaged on a weighted basis.

This level of coverage, coupled with robust upstream data on the molybdenum-related inputs, makes IMOA’s chemical LCI study one of the most representative LCI studies carried out for these chemicals and provides a sound basis for LCA studies related to molybdenum chemicals and their applications.

The chemical LCIs drew upon the Mo Metallurgical Study for the upstream intermediate products production. Upstream molybdenum products production plus the chemical process(es) and production of materials and energy used in the chemical production processes, shown in the figure below, make up the system boundaries.

Aggregation of production data included rigorous data checks, application of methodological rules that adhered to the ISO 14040 set of standards, calculation of weighted averages of facility data, and reporting of statistical information for each LCI flow monitored. LCI models were built in the SimaPro LCA software.

The results, available upon request, are presented in terms of one kilogram of molybdenum in each chemical. By themselves, the results have little meaning. However, when the LCI results are used as part of an application, the application and performance of the chemical becomes meaningful and interpretable.

Carbon Dioxide

Note: the results of the LCI studies are not intended for use to compare one molybdenum chemical or intermediate product to another. In fact, one should not compare any material on a per kg or pound basis unless the materials being compared have the exact same performance characteristics and can be replaced on a 1-1 ratio (this is rarely the case). Comparisons are meaningless – and inappropriate – unless proper functionality and performance characteristics are included in the systems compared, such as quantity and performance in an end product and the useful lifetime of that end product. Alternatives compared also should be reasonable and realistic.

Below are some results presented in terms of the contribution of the main components for the chemical system: upstream molybdenum production (mining, milling/concentration, and roasting to produce tech oxide), chemical processing, ancillary materials production, and transport of materials to the chemical plant.

Carbon Dioxide

Carbon Dioxide

SOx in Air

SOx in Air

Fuel Energy

Fuel Energy