The Titanium Supply Chain For The Aerospace Industry Goes Through Russia – by Willy Shih (Forbes Magazine – March 6, 2022)

The terrible war in Ukraine and subsequent sanctions placed on many Russian organizations have raised questions about potential supply chain vulnerabilities. While Russia is mostly an exporter of resources like oil, gas, and metals, one market where it is a dominant player is for titanium and titanium forgings. Many people are waking up to the potential consequences of a longer-term stoppage in the flow of these critical materials.

Titanium and titanium alloys have unique properties: they are lightweight and have a very high ratio of strength to weight. Their density is typically around 60% that of steel. They withstand high temperatures, and have a high resistance to corrosion.

These properties have caused the metal to be widely used in the aerospace industry, chemical processing vessels and piping, power plant components, desalination plants, and medical applications like implants and surgical devices.

Titanium alloys are also used in sporting equipment like golf club heads, bicycles, and winter sports equipment like bobsled runners. Separately, titanium dioxide is the principal pigment in white paint, and it is also used in paper, plastics, and cosmetics.

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