Titanium Element Poster Assignment

Posted on by Tam

To celebrate the International Year of Chemistry (IYC), Chem 13 News magazine together with the University of Waterloo's Department of Chemistry and the Faculty of Science encouraged chemistry educators and enthusiasts worldwide to adopt an element and artistically interpret that element. The project created a periodic table as a mosaic of science and art. 

Thank you to all the teachers and students who participated in the collaborative Periodic Table Project. Students from all Canadian provinces and territories, 20 U.S. states and 14 countries researched, created and designed the elemental tiles.

Mobile apps

See the amazing artwork for each elemental tile designed by chemistry students from around the world. The apps include the creative process behind each tile along with basic atomic properties of the element. The apps work to truly highlight the artistic expression of the Periodic Table Project. 

Download the free applications for Apple, Blackberry or Android devices! 

Posters

The University of Waterloo has helped us mail out complimentary classroom-sized periodic table posters (36" by 27") to all participants, all high schools in Canada and Chem 13 News magazine readers. 

If you are interested in a poster, new subscribers to Chem 13 News magazine will receive a complimentary folded poster with their first issue. 

New elements contest

Chem 13 News magazine ran a contest to design tiles for the four newly named elements, nihonium (Nh), moscovium (Mc), tennessine (Ts) and oganesson (Og). Our New Elements Contest received over 200 submissions from over 40 schools.  See the new elements contest page to see the winners.  

Wall Mural

In April 2012, a 25-foot by 18-foot wall mural of the final Periodic Table Project was installed at the Earth Sciences Museum at the University of Waterloo. 

We wish to thank 3M Canada for providing the materials and the installation of the wall mural.

Interactive online version of the Periodic Table Project | New elements contest | Mobile apps | Posters | Wall mural | Project contributors

Interactive online version of the Periodic Table Project

Although the mobile app is much nicer, if you want you can read about who created each tile, its creative process and scientific data relevant to the high school curriculum.

Project Contributors

Thanks to the Department of Chemistry, University of Waterloo for their continued support of Chem 13 News magazine throughout the project. Thanks to Lew Brubacher, Kathy Jackson and John Honek for their help and advice.

Thanks to all the project sponsors:  3M Canada (London, Ontario), Office of Research, University of Waterloo, and Chemical Institute of Canada (Ottawa, Ontario).

Special thanks to Kent Neilsen, 3M Canada, for taking the time to contact his first University of Waterloo co-op student (Jean Hein) for International Year of Chemistry and initiating the relationship between 3M Canada and the University of Waterloo.  

    

Titanium


This titanium blisk (bladed impeller disk) is from the intake stage of a jet engine, where the light weight and high strength of titanium are key. Titanium is expensive because it must be cast under inert atmosphere.

Scroll down to see examples of Titanium.

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Expensive pen.
This is an obscenely expensive solid titanium pen from Matt D Tactical. Very nice, and unlike certain other titanium pens, this one is actually made of real titanium.
Source:Matt D Tactical
Contributor:
Acquired:13 January, 2010
Text Updated:13 January, 2010
Price: $237
Size: "
Purity: >94%

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Schick Quattro Titanium blade.
A Schick Quattro brand "titanium" shaving blade. I have not tested this blade, but if there's any titanium it would be in the form of a titanium nitride coating, not solid titanium.
Source:Walmart
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:31 October, 2009
Text Updated:31 October, 2009
Price: $2
Size: 2"
Purity: <1%

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Earrings with rutile.
This is a titanium earring with rutile quartz, which is appropriate since rutile quartz contains inclusions of titanium dioxide.
Source:Dan Klarmann
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:21 April, 2009
Text Updated:18 October, 2009
Price: Anonymous
Size: 1"
Purity: >99%

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Gas phase titanium crystals.
Shiny vapor-deposited titanium crystals.
Source:Ethan Currens
Contributor:Ethan Currens
Acquired:17 October, 2009
Text Updated:29 October, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 0.5"
Purity: 99.99%

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Dental implants.
Assorted titanium dental implants
Source:Dan Klarmann
Contributor:Dan Klarmann
Acquired:17 October, 2009
Text Updated:18 October, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 0.5"
Purity: >99%

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Titanium hammer.
Hammers are sold by weight. A hammer that isn't heavy enough can't do the job no matter what material it's made of, so hammers made of a very light metal like titanium simply have to be larger. Is there a point to using an expensive light metal to make something that is defined and sold by weight? If there is, I don't know it.
Source:Farm & Fleet
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:22 April, 2009
Text Updated:23 April, 2009
Price: $80
Size: 5"
Purity: >90%

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Lovely necklace.
Very, very nice titanium necklace (or technically known as a gorget) by MrTitanium. It looks like something Spock would wear around his neck during one of those Vulcan mating rituals.
Source:Dan Klarmann
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:21 April, 2009
Text Updated:23 April, 2009
Price: Anonymous
Size: 6"
Purity: >99%

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Museum-grade sample.
Another view of the lovely titanium crystal bars described earlier.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:21 April, 2009
Text Updated:21 April, 2009
Price: See Listing
Size: 6"
Purity: >99.99%
Sample Group:RGB Samples

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Museum-grade sample.
Another view of the lovely titanium crystal bars described earlier.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:21 April, 2009
Text Updated:21 April, 2009
Price: See Listing
Size: 6"
Purity: >99.99%
Sample Group:RGB Samples

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Titanium white paint.
Titanium dioxide is the opacity in most paint, and the white in nearly all white paint.
Source:eBay seller charltonmills
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:16 April, 2009
Text Updated:17 April, 2009
Price: $6
Size: 1"
Purity: <30%

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Razor foil.
Another, more intact, titanium nitride coated (on the inside) electric razor foil.
Source:Farm & Fleet
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:8 April, 2009
Text Updated:9 April, 2009
Price: $30
Size: 2"
Purity: <1%

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Titanium headphone speaker cone.
This is a very shiny speaker cone from a pair of headphones prominently labeled as having titanium speaker cones. I have not tested the material, but it certainly looks like it could be genuine titanium, and I have no reason to doubt it.
Source:Radio Shack
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:24 March, 2009
Text Updated:24 March, 2009
Price: $40
Size: 2"
Purity: 94%

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Fake titanium golf club.
This golf club, sold by a major national sporting goods chain, is completely fake. It has "6061 TATANIUM" prominently embedded in the metal of the club head, but tests indicate that it is plain aluminum. The fact that "6061" is a standard industrial aluminum alloy does not look good.
Compare this to my earlier sample titanium golf club, which is genuine titanium despite costing $10 less at Walmart.
Source: Dick's Sporting Goods
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:24 March, 2009
Text Updated:24 March, 2009
Price: $40
Size: 5"
Purity: 0%

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Extremely small scissors.
Nick picked up these scissors at a flea market in Germany. The handles are normal sized, but the scissor part is extremely small, just big enough to cut one string, or more likely, one suture thread. I think only a medical application could explain the small size and exotic nature of this implement.
Source:Nick Mann
Contributor:Nick Mann
Acquired:8 February, 2009
Text Updated:22 April, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 6"
Purity: >90%

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Titanium nitride razor blade.
The blades from inside a rotary electric shaver. The gold color is titanium nitride, a hard, abrasion-resistant coating. See the shaver foil sample also listed under titanium for more about the use of titanium in shaving and other products.
Source:Walmart
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:1 December, 2008
Text Updated:17 March, 2009
Price: $30
Size: 2"
Purity: <1%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Rough titanium metal in slag.
For a recent Popular Science article I made titanium metal by thermite reduction. (This page has a detailed description of how it's done by the guy who invented this particular method.) The results were spectacular in terms of fire and heat, so-so in terms of actual metal produced. Shown here are several examples of the slag and metal from these reactions. The crystals are some combination of garnet, sapphire, and maybe fluorite, which come from the bi-products of the reaction. Crystals can form because the reaction is so hot that it creates not only molten titanium but also molten aluminum oxide, molten calcium fluoride, not to mention molten flower pot if that's what you're running the reaction in.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:30 October, 2008
Text Updated:31 October, 2008
Price: $1
Size: 1"
Purity: <90%

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Platinized titanium plating electrode.
This is an electrode meant to deliver current to an electroplating bath.

As far as I can tell "platinized titanium" in this context means simply platinum plated titanium. For electroplating use the ideal non-consumable electrode would be solid platinum, because it is the metal most resistant to oxidation under extreme chemical and electrical conditions.

The small issue of its extremely high cost is the only reason people look for alternatives to solid platinum. Titanium is also a good, corrosion resistant metal, so it makes sense to plate platinum over it: Any small imperfections in the platinum coating will not lead to rapid failure as they would if the underlying metal were more vulnerable to breakdown.
Source:FDJ On Time
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:14 June, 2008
Text Updated:14 June, 2008
Price: $60
Size: 1.5"
Purity: >99%

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Titanium nitride razor foil.
This is the foil covering from a common electric shaver. Normally it would be curved around a series of blades that vibrate back and forth across it. You are looking here at the inside of the foil, the part that would be in contact with the blades. The gold color is a good indication that the surface has been coated with titanium nitride, a very hard material often used to coat cutting tools due to its abrasion resistance.

This particular foil is from a brand of razor that prominently displays the word TITANIUM on its packaging, in shiny metallic letters. I've been told (by an executive at a rival razor company) that they used to use the word titanium on the packaging without actually bothering to include any titanium nitride, or any other titanium, in the product itself. Based on this sample they are now using real titanium nitride, though it's still somewhat misleading in my opinion to promote the thing so strongly as a TITANIUM razor when in fact the coating is only a minor factor in its performance.

But at least there is real titanium in the product, unlike with many I investigated in my Popular Science column on fake titanium products.

Source:Walmart
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:14 June, 2008
Text Updated:14 June, 2008
Price: $30
Size: 2"
Purity: <1%

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Solid titanium dive knife.
I wrote a column for Popular Science about fake titanium products (for example, a "titanium" golf club that is actually made of ordinary aluminum). In that column I discuss "titanium" knives and scissors, which are typically actually steel with a titanium nitride coating. This isn't fake, in that there is real titanium being used in a sensible way, but at the same time they are not really solid titanium either. In fact, I say in that article that solid titanium cutting tools don't exist and wouldn't really make much sense, since titanium nitride coated steel would stay sharper much longer, and is therefore actually a higher quality product than solid titanium would be.
But of course, I failed to take into account the scuba diving industry, which likes all things titanium. (You can read about this in the description of my solid titanium crowbar.) This is a solid titanium dive knife (plastic handle removed to show how the titanium core extends all the way through the handle). It really is solid titanium, it passes the spark test described in my Pop Sci article.
Source:eBay seller scubadiscount
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:3 February, 2008
Text Updated:3 February, 2008
Price: $75
Size: 9"
Purity: >94%

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High purity plate.
This is a nice curved section of high-purity titanium plate, possibly cut from the edge of a piece intended to become a sputtering target.
Source:eBay seller mrj33
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:8 December, 2007
Text Updated:8 December, 2007
Price: $26
Size: 5"
Purity: 99.998%

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Titanium e-beam window.
This is a small section (about 5 inches long) of a much longer (4-5 foot) titanium window from a 5 million volt Dynamitron. A Dynamitron is a large vacuum tube (by large I mean 4 stories tall) designed to create a beam of high energy electrons that can be used to do useful things like cross-link plastics or create Lichtenberg Figures. In order to do these things the electrons have to exit the vacuum tube and enter the surrounding air, where the objects to be irradiated are located. That's where the window comes in.

What's needed is a material that can seal off the vacuum tube while at the same time allowing the electrons to pass through with minimum loss of energy. You might not immediately think of metal as a good material for this since it would seem, at least to me, that the electrons would just hit the metal and be conducted away. But apparently when they are going fast enough they blast right through. This is quite thin foil, presumably just barely strong enough to withstand the pressure of the surrounding atmosphere. In use it is stretched tightly in a frame, bowed in quite a bit by the air pressing in to form a concave cylindrical shape.

Here is a picture of the bottom end of the Dynamitron showing the horn where the electrons exit.


The window made of this material is located right at the bottom of the triangle-shaped object: You can see the row of bolts that hold it in place. Underneath the horn you can see the carts that transport material to be irradiated under the beam. If the machine were switched on when this picture was taken you would see intense blue light from the exiting electrons hitting air molecules, and I would most likely be dead from x-ray exposure.

Source:Kent State NEO Beam Facility
Contributor:Kent State NEO Beam Facility
Acquired:8 December, 2007
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 5"
Purity: >99%

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Titanium nitride coated bit.
This is a fairly common type of milling bit, a double-sided square end mill. It is intended for use in a vertical milling machine to cut steel, aluminum, brass, or other such metals. The base material is high-speed steel, a tough, hard alloy that by itself is good enough to cut a wide range of materials. The gold color comes from a titanium nitride surface coating, which is even harder, and allows the bit to cut abrasive metals for longer before becoming dull. TiN coated bits are not as good as tungsten carbide bits, but they are a whole lot cheaper.
Source: ENCO
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:2 December, 2007
Text Updated:2 December, 2007
Price: $10
Size: 3"
Purity: <1%

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Titanium belly button ring.
I sent my assistant Nick out to the local mall to find some titanium body jewelry to test for an article I was working on for my Popular Science column. Many products these days use "titanium" in a promotional way on their packaging: Not all of them contain actual titanium. We found several fake titanium products, but the piercing jewelry was all real, because fake titanium inserts would likely cause bad reactions with the skin, or would corrode. You might be able to get away with selling a fake titanium golf club, but a fake titanium tongue stud would get you in trouble.
Source: Hot Topic
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:20 November, 2007
Text Updated:21 November, 2007
Price: $25
Size: 0.75"
Purity: 94%

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Titanium ring.
A slightly more interesting common titanium ring I got because I realized that my only commercially produced titanium ring was really quite dull.
Source:eBay seller ashleysfinejewelry
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:4 September, 2007
Text Updated:5 September, 2007
Price: $25
Size: 1"
Purity: 98%

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Anodized titanium earrings.
These are silly little Space Needle tourist earrings I got on a trip to Seattle with my son. They are either laser or water-jet cut, I'm not sure how to tell the difference for sure, but if I had to guess I would say water-jet because of the slightly larger diameter of the cut at the start and finish of each line. A laser should cut perfectly. But that's just a guess.
The color comes from anodizing the titanium, as I have written about in my Popular Science Column.
Source: Seattle
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:17 June, 2007
Text Updated:9 November, 2007
Price: $20
Size: 1"
Purity: 98%

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Camping utensils.
People who climb mountains don't like to carry any extra weight, but they do like to eat. Hence the proliferation of very lightweight titanium eating utensils. Shown here is a collection of styles including traditional knife, fork, and spoon, as well as the slightly more exotic spork, and even a folding spork useful if you're seriously pressed for space. The chopsticks are also folding: The bamboo ends unscrew and store inside the titanium tube that forms the rest of the chopstick.
Source:eBay seller wrightstuff1903
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:17 February, 2007
Text Updated:17 February, 2007
Price: $100
Size: 7"
Purity: 99%

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Sputtering target.
Sputtering targets are used in vacuum vapor deposition machines as a source of the material to be deposited. A hot plasma or electron beam is used to blast material off the surface of a disk of material like this inside a vacuum chamber. The material is vaporized and travels through the vacuum to strike the surface of something you want to have coated. This is done very commonly with chromium and other shiny metals. I'm not sure why you'd want to do it with titanium, but I'm sure there's a good reason.
Source:eBay seller anish62
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:10 February, 2007
Text Updated:10 February, 2007
Price: $25
Size: 4"
Purity: 99.995%

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Element coin.
Dave Hamric sells element samples under the name Metallium. He's developed a line of coins struck out of various common and uncommon metals: They are quite lovely, and very reasonably priced, considering the difficulty of creating some of them.
Here is the back side of this coin (click either picture to see it larger):

Click the Sample Group link below to see many other coins made of various elements, or click the link to his website above if you want to buy one like this.
Source:Dave Hamric
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:1 December, 2006
Text Updated:14 January, 2007
Price: $10
Size: 0.75"
Purity: >99%
Sample Group:Coins

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Jet engine blisk.
Another intake stage bladed impeller disk (see above for more complete description). Sorry, lost track of where exactly this one was from.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:1 November, 2006
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: Donated
Size: 5"
Purity: >90%

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Wire cut gear.
This is a titanium gear resting in the blank from which it was cut. How was it cut, you might ask? Not with a laser, which couldn't cut that deep. Not with a water jet, which would leave a more ragged cut on the down-stream side. It was cut by wire EDM (electronic discharge machining).
A thin, stretched tungsten wire nibbles slowly away at the titanium by means of an electric current running from the wire to the titanium. Tiny sparks vaporize the titanium more rapidly than the tungsten wire, which is continuously refreshed from a spool.
This method is slow (maybe an hour to finish this small gear) and it can only cut shapes with straight edges. But it's very precise, and it places virtually no stress on the part being made, so you can machine out incredibly delicate, finely detailed shapes without breaking them.
Source:Ethan Currens
Contributor:Ethan Currens
Acquired:30 October, 2006
Text Updated:30 November, 2006
Price: Donated
Size: 2"
Purity: 99.4%

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Raven Penny of Dal Tun, type 1 coin.
Shire Post Mint makes and sells an extensive line of fantasy coins based on the stories and worlds of the Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, George R.R. Martin, and others. What I like about this of course is the fact that many of them are made of unusual elements including titanium, niobium, and even hafnium (click the Sample Group link below to see the others).



If it's still available, you can buy this coin from Shire Post Mint. (And if not, they have many others like it: If that link doesn't work, go to their home page and follow the links to find lots of coins.)

Source:Shire Post Mint
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:10 June, 2006
Text Updated:11 August, 2007
Price: $12
Size: 0.75"
Purity: 99.7%
Sample Group:Coins

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Crystal ring.
This is a ring machined from a solid block of pure crystalline titanium. I start with a piece of titanium crystal bar, select an attractive area to become the top surface of the ring, and then machine away everything that isn't ring. (Much as Michelangelo said that to create his statue of David from a block of marble he simply cut away everything that wasn't David.)
The crystal surface is "natural" in the sense that it grew that way as the bar was being formed out of titanium iodide gas. (Of course it's not a naturally-occurring mineral you would dig out of the ground, since that growth happened in a factory. But neither is it an entirely artificial surface intentionally formed in that shape.)
Titanium has a reputation for being hard to machine, but this high purity material is actually fairly easy to work with, as long as you're using a solid tungsten carbide milling bit and lots of high-grade cutting fluid. Because it consists entirely of fairly large crystals, it's brittle and cannot be resized by bending or rolling, which means the rings must be cut to the exact final size right from the start. Brittle doesn't mean weak: The bands are actually very strong despite being quite thin. Brittle simply means that if you apply enough force, the material will crack instead of bending: In the case of these rings, that's quite a lot of force.
If you're interested in a ring like this for yourself, they are for sale on a special order basis from my partner Max Whitby and myself. The price has not been set, but will probably be around $500. It's higher than the typical titanium rings you see for sale elsewhere because there is only a limited supply of this titanium crystal bar left in the world, and they're not making any more (a new, cheaper process for purifying titanium has been invented which does not result in crystals of this sort). And each ring must be custom-machined from a carefully selected piece of crystal bar: No two are alike.
This is a ring for someone who really appreciates titanium: It's the only element sample I carry with me everywhere. (Well, except for my titanium dental implant, but somehow that's not quite the same thing.)
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:14 December, 2005
Text Updated:11 August, 2007
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: >99.99%
Sample Group:RGB Samples

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Arrowhead.
This arrowhead claims to be titanium coated. It might be for all I know, and at least they have the honesty to say it's not solid titanium, which gives the claim of a titanium coating more credibility. All I can say is, this thing looks like it would hurt.
Source:Walmart
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:15 November, 2005
Price: $10
Size: 2"
Purity: 1%

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Some kind of body part.
This was described as a hip joint part, but it's unlike any of my other hip joints. It does have a shape that suggest a socket, but I'm not clear exactly how it would fit into a joint assembly. Maybe someone will enlighten me?
Source:eBay seller dandn21
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:5 February, 2005
Text Updated:11 March, 2007
Price: $15
Size: 2.5"
Purity: 99.9%
Sample Group:Medical

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Money clip.
The owner of Superior Titanium sent me this lovely example of one of the products they sell, a titanium money clip. The blue color is characteristic of anodized titanium.
Source:Superior Titanium
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:15 November, 2004
Text Updated:11 August, 2007
Price: Donated
Size: 2.5"
Purity: 99.4%

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Museum-grade sample.
In early 2004 Max Whitby and I started selling individual element samples identical or similar to the samples we use in the museum displays we build. These are top-quality samples presented in attractive forms appropriate to the particular element. They are for sale from Max's website and also on eBay where you will find an ever-changing selection of samples (click the link to see the current listings).
This stunning titanium crystal bar is scrap left over from refining high-purity titanium by hot wire decomposition of titanium iodide. There is a molybdenum electrode sticking out one end of each, while the other end is sawn off: The original bar was much longer. Titanium is no longer refined using this process and there is a very limited stock of these ends left in the world.
The diameter varies somewhat as shown in the photo, and some have flat areas, but all show interesting dendritic crystals. Very occasionally one will have a fissure that allows one to see how the crystals grow out from the center.
Source:Theodore Gray
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:15 November, 2004
Text Updated:11 August, 2007
Price: See Listing
Size: 6"
Purity: >99.99%
Sample Group:RGB Samples

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Me.
Just in time for my 40th birthday, I have had my first artificial body part installed, thus transforming me into a titanium sample. OK, it's just a tiny dental implant, but nevertheless, it is titanium, and it is permanently (I hope!) embedded in my jaw bone.
Source: Dr. Kunas
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:29 October, 2004
Price: $1200
Size: 0.5"
Purity: 99%

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Water jet sign.
The guys at Kaistar R&D have the most marvelous computer-controlled waterjet: It cuts through just about anything, including thick tungsten plate, using nothing but a jet of water (mixed with garnet abrasive). Admittedly it's a very, very high pressure jet of water, but still, it's cutting with water and that's amazing. The machine has a computer terminal with a CAD program built in, and Philip Kapchenko very kindly programmed it to cut this sign for me. Since they deal only with the highest purity metals I'm listing this as four-nines purity: That's probably conservative.
Source:Kaistar R&D
Contributor:Kaistar R&D
Acquired:15 October, 2004
Price: Donated
Size: 12"
Purity: 99.99%

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Sputtering targets.
These are a pair of high-purity titanium sputtering targets (used, presumably, for vacuum-plating things with titanium). They ring beautifully: I must get a good recording one day.
Source:eBay seller choppermr
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:10 August, 2004
Price: $1
Size: 12"
Purity: 99.9%

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Etching.
Titanium is one of several metals that can form colorful oxide coatings, with the thickness of the coating determining the color. (The color comes from the fact that the thickness of the coating matches the wavelength of one or another color of light.) Niobium earrings are a good example, as are bismuth crystals. But this is the first time I've seen an actual painting made out of different thicknesses of oxide. My guess is that they used a brush connected to a battery, with the other end clipped to the titanium plate. By varying the voltage and/or time they could vary the thickness of the oxide coating and thereby form different colors.

It's quite remarkable that this was made in the 1970's when titanium was even more exotic and expensive than it is now. It must have been quite expensive to produce, and it's an interesting and quite beautiful piece of art, but I'm going to hazard a guess that it was not successful as art. This guess is based largely on the fact that people in the art world are incredibly bad at recognizing really interesting ideas until someone else tells them it's OK. Titanium doesn't have a lobby in the art world. (The snobbery of the contemporary art world is based on the deep insecurity that comes from having no real basis for preferring one piece over another, or one artist over another: You have to rely on fashion, which is another word for what everyone else thinks. It hasn't always been this way: Back when you had to be able to paint to be a painter it was much easier to tell what was good painting and what wasn't, and people were more relaxed.)

Source:eBay seller hoosier981
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:10 August, 2004
Price: $15
Size:12"
Purity: 99%

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Crystal bar.
This crystal bar is very similar to the one I have from Wah Chang (see above), but this one is from former Soviet Union production. The process that makes these crystal bars is no longer used by anyone, including Wah Chang, so the bits of stock remaining in a few places are all that's left. A few of these are being offered on eBay by Kaistar R&D: Click the source link below if you want to get one.
Source:Kaistar R&D
Contributor:Kaistar R&D
Acquired:6 August, 2004
Price: Donated
Size: 1"
Purity: 99.995%

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Mini element collection.
This is a nice little set from the 1960's. The enclosed price list indicates it cost a few dollars, and the enclosed mercury sample indicates it predates current environmental concerns! Here's a picture of the whole 2-box set:


Source:Blake Ferris
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:15 July, 2004
Price: $61/set
Size: 1"
Purity: >98%

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Bracelet.
A nice little bracelet made of titanium.
Source:eBay seller rfjewelry
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:20 June, 2004
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: $25
Size: 7"
Purity: >90%

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Bag of bolts.
Good old bag-o-bolts, only these have the weirdest triangular drive socket I've ever seen. Even my 25-piece security screw driver set, able to remove just about every kind of screw that is meant to be hard to remove, doesn't have a driver for these. I guess it's a kind of an arms race, and right now these screws are winning. Made of aircraft titanium, of course.
Source:eBay seller aerosource
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:20 June, 2004
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: $10/100
Size: 1"
Purity: >90%

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Crystal bar.
High-purity titanium crystal bar with an embedded molybdenum electrode. This is the cut-off end of a long crystal bar, the remainder having been turned into titanium metal stock: These crystal bars are the final stage of purification before the metal is fabricated into desired shapes, or used to make alloys. My guess is that they don't use the titanium at the end right near the electrode because a certain amount of molybdenum contamination diffuses into the metal as it is being deposited, but that's pure speculation on my part.
It's hard to show in pictures but the surface of this bar consists of beautifully shiny, mirror-like concave and convex surfaces quite reminiscent of hafnium crystal bar formed by iodic decomposition: The 3D rotatable image shows this much better than the normal photo.
Source:Wah Chang
Contributor:Wah Chang
Acquired:14 May, 2004
Price: Donated
Size: 7"
Purity: >99.9%

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Scissors.
Titanium scissors? Well, why not. Nice smooth action. Not sure if they are really made of titanium, but they could be.
Source:Walmart
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:2 April, 2004
Price: $8
Size: 10"
Purity: <30%

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Nail puller.
I love titanium tools, too bad they are so expensive! This is a cat's paw style nail puller, very light and probably very strong.
Source:Duluth Trading Company
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:24 March, 2004
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: $50
Size: 10"
Purity: >90%

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Rough cut plate.
This is fairly heavy (5/16" thick) titanium plate crudely sheared into squares and found at a scrap yard in southern California.
Source:John Wechselberger
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:15 March, 2004
Text Updated:16 March, 2009
Price: $4
Size: 4"
Purity: >90%

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Titanium Rorschach test.
Many things have been predicted far in advance of their realization. Arthur C. Clark, the science fiction writer, famously predicted the geosynchronous communications satellite long before rocket technology was anywhere near making it possible. Leonardo da Vinci predicted any number of things, like air planes, helicopters, parachutes, and so on.
But I think it's safe to say that in all the history of the human race, from the earliest hunter-gatherers to the greatest thinkers of the modern age, not a single person ever predicted that a remarkable new metal, stronger and lighter than steel and impervious to rust, would be discovered, refined, and purified and that someone would then decide that the highest and best use of a particular bit of it would be to splatter it onto a cold surface, forming this lovely Rorschach test pattern, and that a huge internet trading system, eBay, would be created so that an otherwise un-saleable, indeed unclassifiable, item like that could be offered, found, and sold to a person like me, who for some reason imagines that having it would be a good idea. That is beyond prediction.
So, what do you think it looks like?
Source:eBay seller goventureout
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:4 January, 2004
Price: $10
Size: 7"
Purity: >90%

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Not titanium candle stick holders.
Are these candle stick holders really made of titanium? No, they were just claimed to be made of titanium by the seller. In fact they are 98.3% tin with the remainder being primarily copper, according to analysis by x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy at the Center for Microanalysis of Materials, University of Illinois (partially supported by the U.S. Department of Energy under grant DEFG02-91-ER45439). Just another example of why you should be cautions about claims that something is made of titanium.
Source:eBay seller canadalookingforsomething
Contributor:Theodore Gray
Acquired:3 December, 2003
Price: $20
Size: 8"
Purity: 0%

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Titanium machine screws.
Bored silly with describing titanium samples, I used to have a diversion here describing the difference between a bolt and a machine screw. Well, it turns out my description, based on the type of head and the portion of the shaft that is threaded, was completely and utterly wrong. Alert reader David Cook was kind enough to set me straight quite definitively:
No. Actually, the difference between a bolt and screw is based on its application, not appearance. A bolt is used with a nut to produce a clamping force to hold materials together; whereas a screw interlocks threads with the material itself (no nut on the end).

Screws usually have threads all the way up to provide the maximum possible thread-to-thread contact area with the material for maximum holding power. Bolts usually have only enough threads at the tip to attach a nut. But, some bolts also have threads all the way up so that one or more nuts can be installed anywhere.

A screw is perfectly adequate against smaller forces. Humans and machines can easily install screws (no fumbling with a nut). Without a nut, that's one less part to stock and pay for, and one less part to fall off or become lost. Given the large number used, the savings in cost and efficiency make screws an effective solution.

However, against greater forces, the threads in the material are likely to fail and the screw would rip out. Thicker and stronger material would be required to produce strong-enough threads in the material to resist these greater forces. But that would be heavier and more expensive. Instead, a thick, strong nut can be installed to rely on the nut's threads instead of the material's threads. With a nut and a bolt you can use relatively weaker and thinner (usually lighter and less expensive) material.

Your observation that a bolt usually has a hex head or other external-drive is simply because that type of head allows greater force to be applied, which is necessary to achieve the purpose of a bolt. On the other hand, the head of a screw (slotted, Phillips, internal drive) is designed for convenience of installing and removing, rather than great forces. In fact, most screw heads are purposely designed to be torque limiting (the tool slips out) to prevent over-tightening.

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