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Major titanium products

Oct 26, 2018

  • Titanium metal and TiO2 pigment are the two main products made from titanium minerals, and upon them large industries depend. First by far in terms of volume produced is microcrystalline TiO2 for white pigment. Because of the extremely high refractive index of TiO2 as rutile (2.6 to 2.9, or higher than diamond), it is the chief opacifying pigment used in paint and other products such as plastics and paper, not only for white color but for quite a range of colors. Titanium dioxide pigment commonly forms more than 20 percent by weight of some paints. The pigment industry consumes more than 90 percent of all titanium minerals mined.

  • The product ranked second by volume, though perhaps not in importance, is titanium metal. The high strength-to-weight ratios and resistance to corrosion and high temperatures of titanium metal and titanium-based alloys make them important ingredients in many industries. Most important is the aircraft industry, where the use of titanium has been growing for more than 30 years, to the point that the current generation of commercial airliners can contain 30 percent titanium by weight. Another trend during recent times has been a diversification of titanium-metal uses in other industries. Many industries take advantage of titanium’s corrosion resistance, as in heat exchangers and desalination plants.

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