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Impact Of Materials On Society

Feb 02, 2018

Titanium is known for its strength to weight ratio, resistance to high temperatures, and lustrous metallic white color. It is 60% denser than aluminum and twice as strong. It is also resistant to corrosion in saltwater. These physical properties make titanium especially useful for aircrafts, space crafts and missiles. During the 1950s through to the cold war titanium was considered a strategic material. The U.S. department of Defense still uses titanium heavily but the production of it has decreased significantly.

Titanium has also been incredibly useful in the health industry! It is the only metal that can physically bond with bone without the use of an adhesive. It is also able to withstand the harsh body environment due to its resistance to corrosion and it is non-toxic. Titanium implants have a wide array of usage from dental implants, hip and joint replacement, to pacemakers. Its unique biocompatibility is life changing for some while others may enjoy the uses of titanium without even noticing.

Titanium’s strength and durability is commonly used in automotive applications. It can be too expensive for the everyday vehicle but present in high-end or racing vehicles. It is also used in luxury sporting goods such as golf clubs, tennis rackets, or bicycles because of its strength and lightweight. Small amounts of titanium can also be alloyed with gold improving its hardness.

Titanium dioxide (TiO2) is a naturally occurring oxide (a chemical compound that contains at least one oxygen atom and one other element) that can be found in a many minerals such as ilmenite. This particular mineral also contains iron oxide to extract the titanium dioxide a chemical process must occur to reduce the iron oxide and separate the titanium dioxide. TiO2 has a very bright, white pigment that is useful for products such as paints, papers, plastics, foods and even toothpaste! It also has a very high refraction index making it a common active ingredient in sunscreen since it prevents UVs from penetrating the skin. It can also be found in cosmetics due to its pearlescent effect. The uses for titanium are as abundant as the element itself. As the ninth most abundant element on the planet we have found a multitude of applications that enhance our everyday lives.

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