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Titanium Discovery and Countries with Titanium Mines

Titanium Discovery and Countries with Titanium Mines


The metal titanium is used in various industries, including jewelry and automobile manufacturing. Titanium has high resistance properties. The present Arian Fateh Shargh article provides a summary of how the metal was first discovered and a list of countries with titanium mines.

What is Titanium?

Titanium is a common chemical element found in the Earth`s crust with the atomic number 22. The two primary mineral deposits containing the metal include rutile and ilmenite, which make up 24% of the Earth`s crust. This makes titanium the 9th most common metal on Earth, usually found in minerals and deposits. The metal is silver in color with a low density and high strength. Its name derives from ancient Greek mythological creatures termed “Titans” — immensely powerful and flexible creatures.

How was Titanium Discovered?

Titanium was first discovered accidentally by William Gregor, a British clergyman, and mineralogist, in 1791. Gregor came across an interesting substance in a creek bed and, after analyzing it, discovered that it was a mixture of magnetite, iron oxide, and an unknown third metal.

Four years later, the German scientist Martin Heinrich Klaproth was studying an ore when he discovered that it contained a new metal. He called the newly-discovered metal titanium, and it was only later that he confirmed that Gregor had indeed previously discovered the metal.

During the 1950s and 60s, the Soviet Union became a leading country in the application of this magnificent metal for various purposes in the country`s aerospace and defense sectors throughout the Cold War, so much so that it became the number one producer of titanium. The metal was viewed as a strategic metal that was greatly researched and expanded by the United States during the Cold War. After the element`s discovery, the US reserved a massive store of titanium sponge until it eventually ran out in the 2000s.

Titanium Properties | Discovery

Titanium is a magnificent metal with particular and unique properties of its own. These properties have made titanium a favorite choice for numerous modern and innovative applications. The metal is light in weight and high in strength. The tensile strength of titanium ranges from 30000 to 200000 PSI, depending on the type. Titanium is also low in density. The substance enjoys the highest relation of resistance to density among all metallic elements.

Titanium`s melting point is considerably higher than that of stainless steel. This, in addition to the metal`s light weight and high resistance, is why titanium and titanium alloys are used in planes and missiles (because of their light weight and ability to withstand high temperatures).

Titanium possesses high elasticity. Young`s modulus for the metal`s elasticity equals 50% of that of stainless steel, which gives it perfect spring capabilities. Titanium is also widely utilized in the medical sector since it is one of the most biocompatible metals on Earth; hence, its wide application in the industry, including artificial joints, heart arteries, and other implantable devices.

The thermal expansion rate for titanium and titanium alloys is 50% of that of stainless steel. This means that titanium is less likely to change shape and form in high temperatures compared to stainless steel. This property of titanium, along with its superconductivity qualities, has been put to good use in such devices as induction motors and semiconductor devices. The discovery of titanium proved to be a great leap forward for many industries.

Other Properties of Titanium

  • Excellent heat transfer capability
  • High melting point: 3035 °F (400 degrees above that of steel and 200 above that of aluminum)
  • High resistance against various minerals, acids, and chlorides
  • Non-toxic; this makes titanium an ideal candidate metal for medical implants— devices that find their way inside our bodies
  • High electrical resistivity
  • Drawbacks of Titanium

Titanium`s high strength makes its casting very difficult. Also, the metal has high reactivity, meaning that it needs to be closely monitored and managed throughout the production process. Given its valuable properties and the time and resources put into its production process, titanium is more expensive compared to other metals.

Countries with Titanium Mines:

  1. China
  2. Russia
  3. Japan
  4. Kazakhstan
  5. Ukraine
  6. India
  7. Iran

Closing Remarks on the Discovery of Titanium

Titanium is a common metal with numerous qualities. Due to its favorable properties, it is widely used in various industries, including the aerospace and medical sectors. China is the number one producer of titanium in the world.