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Information @ a Glance

  • Lead(II) oxide is the inorganic compound with the formula PbO. Lead(II) oxide occurs in two polymorphs, red, having a tetragonal crystal structure and yellow, having an orthorhombic crystal structure.

  • Lead oxide is a general term and can be either lead monoxide or "litharge" (PbO); lead tetroxide or "red lead" (Pb 3 O4 ); or black or "gray" oxide which is a mixture of 70 percent lead monoxide and 30 percent metallic lead.

  • PbO is produced on a large scale as an intermediate in the conversion of lead ores, mainly galena into metallic lead.

  • Commercial lead oxides can all be prepared by wet chemical methods. With the exception of lead dioxide, lead oxides are produced by thermal processes in which lead is directly oxidized with air.

  • Three processes are used commercially in the moderate temperature range: refractory furnace, rotary tube furnace, and the Barton Pot process.

  • PbO is used extensively in manufacturing of lead glasses and ceramic glazes as well as in fine dinnerware.

  • It is also used as an activator in rubber, a curing agent in elastomers, a sulfur removal agent in the production of thioles and in oil refining, and an oxidation catalyst in several organic chemical processes.

  • Lead is bought and sold by many countries on the world market, in the forms of ore, impure metal and refined metal, as well as final products.

  • Total production includes both lead from ore (primary lead) and secondary lead, produced from scrap batteries and other lead-containing products.

  • World-wide, production of refined lead from scrap and other secondary sources now accounts for approximately 60% of total lead production.

  • Lead additions improve the appearance and cutting properties of crystal glass. Small additions are also made to optical and electrical glass.  The major application of leaded glass is in television screens and computer monitors, to protect viewers from the harmful X‐rays generated by these appliances. 

  • Red lead (lead oxide) is the basic paint primer for iron and steel.

  • Lead‐acid batteries for automotive, industrial and consumer purposes account for 70% of the world’s demand for lead.

  • The lead price is moving on rise trend like other metal. In the past year 2004 and 2005 was highly volatile for lead prices

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