The Low Cost Production of Titanium Alloy Powder Directly from Ore
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MATERIALS & ELECTROCHEMICAL RESEARCH (ME
7960 S. Kolb Rd., Tucson, AZ, 85706
AbstractThe utilization of titanium is limited by its high cost that is a result of winning it from ores, processing to purify and alloy, and down stream processing to produce component parts. Producing titanium alloy powder directly from ore has the potential to rapidly produce low cost mill products. Known processing to produce titanium sponge has not been demonstrated to produce alloy powder. MER has demonstrated the technical feasibility of utilizing low cost ore, not suitable for other processing approaches, which can be thermally processed to produce a feed from which an alloy powder can be produced in a combined electrochemical-chemical processing technology. The processing will be further developed in collaboration with major titanium alloy powder users to define the types and limits of alloy element modifications possible. Preliminary processing suggest some alloy compositions can be produced in a powder for approximately the same cost as Kroll sponge which offers the potential to dramatically alter the titanium industry. This program will define processing to produce uniform alloying composition in each and every particle, particle morphology, and produce powder and consolidated billets for delivery.
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