Titanium is a silver colored chemical element which has low density, high strength and high resistant to corrosion in sea water and chlorine. Titanium can be alloyed with many elements such as iron, aluminum, vanadium and molybdenum to manufacture strong, light weight alloys for jet engines, missiles, spacecraft, chemicals, petrochemicals etc. Alloys containing titanium has strong corrosive property. Despite being strong like steel, titanium is 40% lighter in weight which makes it suitable to use in wide range of applications. Along with light weight it has strong erosion property which makes titanium as ideal metal for aerospace engineers. Although titanium is considered the fourth most common metal in the earth’s crust, the titanium has to undergo extremely complex process to avoid contamination during process especially by oxygen. This disruption during the production process accounts for high cost. The main element used in the primary production of titanium are ilmenite and rutile where ilmenite accounts for 90% and rutile, which accounts for the remaining 10%.
Based on type, titanium market can be classified into titanium concentrate, titanium tetrachloride, titanium sponge, ferrotitanium, titanium pigment and others. Titanium concentrate falls under ilmentile group. Titanium concentrate consist of titanium white powder which is generally used in wide range of applications such as coatings, plastics, printing ink and paper making, cosmetics, chemical fibers, electronics, ceramics, alloys, glass etc. According to the formation process titanium concentrate is divided into two types namely rock and placer. The titanium concentrates present in rocks often coexist with magnetite vanadium titano-magnetite where as titanium concentrate present in placers coexist with zircon sand, rutile, monazite, etc. The titanium concentrates are used for producing titanium metal and is used as an additive of titanium alloy. Titanium tetrachloride is an inorganic compound used as a intermediate in the production of titanium metal and pigment titanium dioxide. Titanium tetrachloride is majorly used in intermediates, pigments, plating agents and surface treating agents. Titanium sponge is formed when titanium tetrachloride is passed in a gaseous phase over molten magnesium or sodium. Titanium sponge is used in aerospace industry to manufacture crucial engine parts, heat exchangers, crucial engine parts etc. Ferrotitanium is a ferroalloy mainly used in steelmaking. By grade, ferrotitanium can be divided into two grades, the first containing approximately 35% titanium and the second containing roughly 70% titanium. Ferrotitanium is majorly used in steel and stainless steel processing units, paints, varnishes, military aircrafts etc.
Based on application, the global titanium market can be classified into aerospace & marine, industrial, medical, energy, pigments, additives and coatings, papers & plastics and others. Titanium have unique properties such as high tensile strength to density ratio, high corrosion resistance, fatigue resistance, high crack resistance and ability to withstand moderately high temperatures without creeping. These properties make titanium as an ideal metal to use in aircrafts, armor plating, naval ships, space crafts and missiles. Due to strong corrosion property, titanium pipes are used in chemical and petrochemical industries. Due to its nontoxic nature it is used in many medical equipment such as hip balls, sockets and dental implants.
Based on geography, the global titanium market can be classified into Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. North America and Europe are the major markets for titanium, led by the upturn in growth of aerospace and marine industry. The titanium companies in Asia-Pacific and Latin America is investing more in research and development due to its properties such as has low density, high strength and high resistant to corrosion, which have led to demand for titanium in Asia-Pacific and Latin America market.
Major players operating in the global titanium market are Huntsman International, Ineos, Iluka Resources Ltd, Sumitomo Corporation , VSMPO-AVISMA Corporation, Toho Titanium Co., Ltd , RTI International Metals , Allegheny Technologies Incorporated and others. These companies hold a significant share of the market. Thus, the titanium market experiences intense competition.
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