Borates in Energy

Powering Sustainability

As our population and cities grow, so does our need for safe, sustainable energy. To meet global needs, we must increase the efficiency of our energy consumption and optimize the capacity of existing and emerging energy sources.

U.S. Borax is integral to sustainable energy. Whether on the oil field, in the nuclear plant, or across the wind farm, our innovative technologies and borate products help to make energy safer, more efficient, and more affordable.

Sustainable energy

Supporting sustainability

Solar and wind energy depend on strong, durable materials. U.S. Borax products help to enable these technologies—and we strive to make our own operations sustainable, too.

  • In solar thermal heating applications, borosilicate glass helps to focus and capture solar energy.
  • Textile fiberglass made with borates is important in the creation of wind turbines, and borates are a part of the high-power magnets that are used in turbine generator systems.
  • Aside from providing materials used in sustainable energy production, we make environmental protection and safety key aspects of our own operations. Since 2001, our Sustainable Development program has been a foundation of our commitment.
  • Our Product Stewardship and Health, Safety, Environment (HSE) teams are dedicated to the responsible production and safe use of U.S. Borax products.
Powered by boron

Strengthening infrastructure

Around the world, borate-based chemicals are important to modern oil field operation and recovery as well as the safe and efficient production of nuclear power.

  • The reaction of borates with certain alcohols and carbohydrates produce adhesives and fluids that are used in oil recovery.
  • As an anticorrosive, borates are used to help protect industrial water systems.
  • Borates have the ability to capture thermal neutrons resulting from the fission reaction of uranium nuclear fuel; that ability makes them an essential ingredient in the control and safety of nuclear pressurized water reactors.
  • Elsewhere in nuclear power plants, boron carbide and borates are used for control rods, corrosion inhibition, and emergency shutdown systems.
Borosilicate glass

Improving efficiency

Borates are used in the production of fire-resistant, high-efficiency insulation and innovative building materials, helping save fuel and energy so that we can make effective use of our natural resources.

  • Borates are used in ceramic tiles and are essential in insulation fiberglass to help improve energy efficiency and decrease heating and cooling costs.
  • As a natural biocide, borates help to control damaging insects, fungi, and bacteria—allowing us to make more efficient use of forest products in construction.
  • Borates are used to stabilize metallurgical slags, helping to keep them out of landfills and encouraging reuse.

Energy Products

Ceramics, Enamels, and Glazes

Borates can be incorporated into frits—glassy, silica-rich materials that are used in the manufacture of glazes and enamels—to make them insoluble and help reduce glass viscosity. This improves fit, luster, durability, and chemical resistance. Learn More ›

Dehybor

This hard, glassy, granular product is excellent when forming flux or glass, where it helps to increase yield and reduce energy consumption. Learn More ›

Batteries and Capacitors

Borates are components in the electrolyte of lithium ion batteries and supercapacitors and have been investigated in the surface treatment of graphite anodes for lithium ion batteries. Learn More ›

Neobor

With lower transportation, handling, and storage costs, this concentrated sodium borate is used in glass, fiberglass, cleaning products, and flame retardants. Learn More ›

Optibor boric acid

From reducing melting temperatures in fiberglass production to inhibiting corrosion in fuel additives, Optibor has a multitude of uses in numerous industries. Learn More ›

Wood Protection and Biocides

Borates and boron compounds are used in the creation of affordable, durable, and environmentally safe wood and wood products in order to protect them from fire, fungi, and pests. Learn More ›

Ceramics, Enamels, and Glazes

Borates can be incorporated into frits—glassy, silica-rich materials that are used in the manufacture of glazes and enamels—to make them insoluble and help reduce glass viscosity. This improves fit, luster, durability, and chemical resistance. Learn More ›

Ammonium Pentaborate

Whether inhibiting heat, flame, or corrosion, the purity of this alkaline salt makes it an excellent choice. Learn More ›

Borax Decahydrate

From detergents to dyes to adhesives, this mild alkaline salt does it all, particularly excelling as a buffering and fluxing agent. Learn More ›

Glass and Textile Fiberglass

Heat resistant, chemical resistant, scratch and shock resistant, borosilicate glass—made with silica and boron trioxide—provides strength and durability across a range of products from cell phones to solar panels. Learn More ›

Boric Oxide

Pure anhydrous form is ideal where boric acid is required without metals. A powerful tool in the production of specialty glasses, ceramics, enamels, and fluxes. Learn More ›

Borogard ZB

Protect wood and wood composites from destroying organisms, rot decay fungi, and subterranean termites. Learn More ›

Insulation

In insulation fiberglass (glass wool), borates absorb infrared light, significantly increasing the performance of the insulation. Borates’ fire-retardant properties are also used in cellulosic insulation products. Learn More ›

Dehybor

This hard, glassy, granular product is excellent when forming flux or glass, where it helps to increase yield and reduce energy consumption. Learn More ›

Nuclear Energy

Borates play a key role in the operation of nuclear power plants and are essential in the safety and control of pressurized water reactors (PWRs). Boron carbide is also used in control rods, and borates are used as corrosion inhibitors and as a key safety feature of the emergency core cooling system. Learn More ›

Wood Protection and Biocides

Borates and boron compounds are used in the creation of affordable, durable, and environmentally safe wood and wood products in order to protect them from fire, fungi, and pests. Learn More ›

Neobor

With lower transportation, handling, and storage costs, this concentrated sodium borate is used in glass, fiberglass, cleaning products, and flame retardants. Learn More ›

Optibor boric acid

From reducing melting temperatures in fiberglass production to inhibiting corrosion in fuel additives, Optibor has a multitude of uses in numerous industries. Learn More ›

Potassium Tetraborate

An excellent buffering agent, potassium tetraborate can lower the pH of strong alkalis and is also used in welding, soldering, and brazing fluxes. Learn More ›

Sodium Pentaborate

Used primarily in oilfield drilling, sodium pentaborate provides lubrication and stabilization in wells and downhole drilling. Learn More ›

Tim-bor

This industrial, high-performance wood preservative is ideal for protecting rafters, cladding, and joinery against insects and decay. Learn More ›

Powders

When it comes to particulate materials, particle size affects end product quality and properties. U.S. Borax offers many of its products in powder grade. Learn More ›

BORATES AT WORK

Learn more about borates' applications in energy.

Powdered Borates: Specialty Grades for Specialty Applications
Businesses with specialty applications require a special solution: U.S. Borax powders. Our powders contain extremely small particles, but they offer big benef... Learn More
Never Another Chernobyl: Boron in Nuclear Energy Helps Ensure Safety
Nuclear energy today is safer than ever, in no small part due to the beneficial properties of boron for containing nuclear reactions. Learn More
Borates in Oil Production Energize a Steady Supply
Oil is a staple of our energy supply, and its numerous other industrial uses mean that it will be in demand for some time to come. Using borates in oilfield c... Learn More

U.S. Borax, part of Rio Tinto, is a global leader in the supply and science of borates—naturally-occurring minerals containing boron and other elements. We are 1,000 people serving 500 customers with more than 1,700 delivery locations globally. We supply 30% of the world’s need for refined borates from our world-class mine in Boron, California, about 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles.  Learn more about Rio Tinto.

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