Titanium is one of the most widespread element, the average content of it in the earth"s crust is 0.57% by mass (among construction metals it takes 4th place, cede to iron, aluminum and manganese). Titanium is mainly in base rock so called “basaltic sell�? (0.9%), less in rocks of “granite shell�? (0.23%) and less in ultrabasic rock (0.03%) etc.
There are known 67 minerals of titanium, mainly with abyssal origin, the most important of which are rutile and ilmenite. Ilmenite (43.7-52.8% ТiO2); rutile, anatase and brookite (94.2-99.0%); titanite (33.7-40.8%), perofskite (38.7-58.9%), titaniferous magnetite.
Titanium as dioxide was discovered by English dilettante mineralogist U. Gregor in 1791 magnetic ferriferous sands of Manacan (England); in 1795 German chemist M.G. Claprot found out that mineral rutile is the natural oxide of this metal, named “titanium�? by him [in Greek mythology titans are the children of Uranium (Sky) and Hea (Earth)].
Technical titanium, used in industry, content oxygen, nitrogen, silicon and carbon admixtures increasing its strength, decreasing its plasticity and impacting on the temperature of its polymorphic conversion.
Titanium has good corrosion stability in atmosphere, sea water and oceanic atmosphere, in various technical solutions and reagents used in chemical, petrol chemical, paper-making and other branches of industry, as well as in hydrometallurgy.
The main advantages of titanium against other construction materials are the combination of lightness, strength and corrosion stability. Titanium alloys by absolute and specific durability are excel in the majority of other alloys, based on another metals (e.g. iron or nickel) in temperature range from -250 till 550 centigrade. According to corrosion stability it can be compared with alloys of noble metals. Yet, as construction metal titanium has started being used in 50th of 20th century because of technical hardship of its extraction from ores and treatment, that’s why the titanium has conditionally considered as rare metal. The main part of titanium is used for the necessities of air and rocket technique and shipbuilding. Titanium and iron alloys, known as “ferrotitanium�? (20-50% Тi), is used as inoculant and deoxidizing component in the metallurgy of special alloys and high quality steels.
Technical titanium is used for chemical reactors, pipelines, control valves, pumps and other equipment production, which are working in aggressive mediums, e.g. chemical machine building. The equipment made of titanium alloys is used in non ferrous metallurgy; it’s used for covering of items made of steel. The usage of titanium in major cases brings noticeable technical and economical effect not only because of increasing of equipment’s working period, but due to process’ intensification possibility (e.g. in nickel’s hydrometallurgy). Biological safety of titanium makes it perfect material for producing of food and surgical equipment. In deep cold the hardness of titanium is increasing but keeping its good plasticity, which allow its usage as construction material in cryogenic technique. Titanium is well for polishing, anodic coating and other methods of surface treatment, so that is used for various art items’ and statues’ creation.
Titanium carbide has high hardness and used in hard alloys production used in tools and abrasive grains manufacturing.