The current price of Rhenium is $2,021.30 per kg.

Please note that the price provided is the retail price for private investors and is aligned with industry retail pricing. For bulk purchases, whether investment or industry, please contact us for a quotation.

Table: Rhenium Historical Prices and Price Changes

DateRhenium PriceChange % to TodayAnnual Change %
Apr 24 2024$2,021.30 / kg
Jan 1 2024$1,995.00 / kg+1.32%
Jan 1 2023$1,606.60 / kg+25.81%+24.18%
Jan 1 2022$1,730.10 / kg+16.83%-7.14%
Jan 1 2021$1,405.00 / kg+43.86%+23.14%
Jan 1 2020$1,711.50 / kg+18.10%-17.91%
Jan 1 2019$1,869.32 / kg+8.13%-8.44%
Jan 1 2018$2,118.90 / kg–4.61%-11.78%

Rhenium Historical Price Movement

At today’s price of $2,021.30 per kg, rhenium has changed +1.32% since the start of 2024 and is up +25.81% since last year. This strategic metal is up +43.86% compared to its price of $1,405 per kg on Jan 1st 2021. Since Jan 1st 2020 the price change is +18.10%. If we go back more years to Jan 1st 2018, when the cost of rhenium was $2,118.90 per kg, then the change is –4.61%.

Rhenium is an extremely rare and dense chemical element with atomic number 75, which makes it a part of the transitional metals group. It has a silver-grey appearance and melts at an incredibly high temperature of 3,186 degrees Celsius / 5,767 Fahrenheit.

Let’s look at the various uses of rhenium and who produces it first in order to make an educated forecast on its future price (or click here to jump to the rhenium forecast).

Rhenium Uses

Rhenium

Its unique features have caused rhenium to be used in many different areas, from military and aerospace technology to medical research. Its high melting point and strength make rhenium ideal (and un-substitutable!) for use in jet and rocket engines, wind turbine blades, and combustion chambers. It is often added to tungsten-based alloys to make them even stronger, and these “super-alloys” contain about 6% of rhenium.

Its softness allows rhenium to be used in electronic components such as electrodes and contacts. In medical research, rhenium is used as a radiopaque agent to more easily identify tumors or other lesions in CT scans and for localized cancer therapy.

In addition, rhenium plays an essential role as an additive in catalysts for more efficient fuel combustion in power plants and oil refineries. It does have several other industrial uses, such as lamps for cinema projectors. 

With more research about rhenium occurring every day, no doubt there will be new future applications for this powerful element.

Where is Rhenium Produced?

Rhenium is the rarest element naturally occurring in the earth’s crust, estimated to be found naturally in less than one part per billion. It must be extracted from ores, and approximately 80% of rhenium is mined from porphyry molybdenum deposits containing 0.001% to 0.2% rhenium.

Commercially speaking, rhenium is rare and expensive because it can be challenging to extract the rhenium from its ore form. The primary global producers are Chile, the US, Poland, China, and Russia. Annually, only about 40-50 tons (80,000- 100,000 lb) of rhenium is produced, and most of it comes from Chilean ores. An additional 25 tons of supply per year comes from scrap and recycling.

 

What Factors Determine the Price of Rhenium?

The cost of this invaluable asset is determined by shifting market conditions, where the availability and demand for it plays a crucial role.

So if the demand for items that require rhenium, like rocket engines or wind turbine blades, rises, so too does the need for this unique and elusive metal.

Being the rarest naturally occurring element, rhenium is always extracted from ores, and the costly extraction process constrains the supply. China’s export policies don’t impact the supply chain like they do with rare earths and several other strategic metals. While they’re the 4th largest producer in the world, their production is destined for their domestic consumption, and the Western world doesn’t rely on their output of rhenium.

Rhenium Price Forecast

Over the past 40 years, the demand for rhenium has been driven primarily by the aerospace and energy sectors. Prices peaked over $3,000 / kg in 1980 as new US and European clean air laws increased demand for high octane lead-free gasoline. Prices dropped to lows of $300 / kg in 1996 when new supplies from the East entered the market after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Prices gradually increased again to a peak of $12,000 / kg in 2008 from combined demand for aircraft engines and gas turbines. 

Incentivized by these high prices, methods were discovered to recycle rhenium from used super alloys and re-use them in new melts. This led to a gradual price decline below $2,000 in 2021, as recycled materials increased worldwide supply by 50%. However, several rhenium scrap recovery operations closed in recent years as they were no longer cost-effective. Recycled rhenium now accounts for about 35% of the total annual supply. 

China isn’t a constraining factor on the supply side of rhenium (they only produce to meet their own domestic demand). However, Chile is by far the largest producer (49% of global in 2021) because that’s where the majority of porphyry (volcanic) copper ores are mined. So there’s still a significant dependency on one region in the supply chain.

Regarding a price forecast, rhenium’s upside potential looks significantly higher than any downside potential in the medium term. Rhenium is the only one of the strategic metals we sell that had decreased in value between the start of this decennium and the start of 2023, driven by the lack of new orders for aircraft engines during the COVID years. However, with the airline industry recovering after the downturn and military budgets increasing across the globe, the demand for aircraft engines started to pick up and will grow significantly. The supply side is already contracted, as recycling isn’t cost-effective at current prices, while Chile’s political unrest in recent years is well documented.

The price of this strategic metal rose by 24% last year (see table above), and industry experts predict this trend will continue. Many will not be surprised if the price of rhenium goes on a run for the next 5 to 10 years. This conclusion is largely and understandably attributed to space exploration becoming a fully-fledged space industry between now and 2050.

In terms of the shorter term, we only have to look at the price increase of hafnium in 2022 (+170%!) to realize that strategic metals not dependent on China’s export policies can be subject to significant price spikes as short-term demand increases (in hafnium’s case, from the aerospace industry). Not a single analyst predicted such a price premium for hafnium that year. Still, this metal ensured our investors with a mixed basket made solid gains in 2022, as these stellar returns more than offset the minor losses on their rare earths last year (which themselves all saw double-digit increases in 2021).

 

How to Buy Rhenium

With its high melting point and impressive mechanical properties, rhenium is a coveted material in many industries. To ensure they get the best quality available, major corporate buyers such as Boeing, Airbus, and NASA tend to rely on renowned metal dealers who are able to source industry-grade rhenium of 99.9% purity or higher.

By guaranteeing product provenance, these so-called ‘key intermediaries’ also make it possible for global companies to access hard-to-find rare earth elements quickly and safely – something not achievable by buying online through less reputable channels like Amazon or Alibaba.

Rhenium should only be purchased from trusted sources that can deliver certifiable levels of quality control; otherwise, the metal can only be liquidated to hobbyists. We’re the only globally licensed industry supplier offering private investors the option to purchase and safely store industry-grade rhenium. Hence any discerning investor who wants to own some and benefit from potential future price increases can do this safely with us.

Rhenium futures contracts are also traded on the Shanghai Metal Market (SMM).

How to Sell Rhenium

If you have some rhenium at home, you should be able to sell it to other hobbyists via online marketplaces like eBay, Alibaba, and Amazon. The price you get will depend on what they offer, but it won’t be anywhere near the market price.

When it comes to selling industrial-grade rhenium, buyers like Lockheed Martin, SpaceX, and Boeing require more than just a secure transaction. To ensure that only quality materials are circulated in their production processes, they source their supply from trustworthy suppliers who can present documentary evidence of how each metal has been managed since its production – known as the chain of custody. That’s why they don’t shop on eBay.

Our investors can be confident that the liquidation of their strategic metals to industry buyers is secure and swift, as we are such a trusted industry supplier.

All prices on this page last updated Apr 24 2024.