Titanium is the "king" in the manufacturing industry. Because titanium metal is not only strong and tough, but also has good biocompatibility and corrosion resistance, it is very suitable for the manufacture of aerospace parts and medical implants.
However, due to the complex processing and production of titanium and titanium alloy products and the low yield rate, a large amount of titanium scrap will be generated in the process of manufacturing parts, and the manufacturing cost is high, making it difficult to be widely promoted and applied. Because of its good processing performance, titanium powder has greatly improved the forming technology of parts, increased the utilization rate of materials, and reduced the production cost. In recent years, it has been vigorously developed and has a broad market application prospect.
The nature of titanium powder
Physical properties: Titanium powder is dark gray amorphous powder, insoluble in water and organic solvents at room temperature. It is a non-magnetic metal, it will not be magnetized in a large magnetic field, and it is non-toxic and tasteless.
Chemical properties: It does not react with water, dilute sulfuric acid, dilute hydrochloric acid and nitric acid at room temperature, but can be corroded by hydrofluoric acid, phosphoric acid, and molten alkali; titanium can be dissolved in hot hydrochloric acid and hot sulfuric acid, and also soluble in hydrofluoric acid Or in a mixture of hydrofluoric acid and hydrochloric acid (sulfuric acid); titanium powder will increase the content of nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon in the atmosphere, and mixing with strong oxides can cause an explosion.
There are four main methods for industrial production of titanium powder:
Titanium metal is very active and easily reacts with other elements or compounds, causing oxidation, combustion, and explosion, making it very difficult to produce titanium powder with high purity and low oxygen content. In the production process, its purity and performance are largely determined by the preparation method and its process conditions.
1. Hydrodehydrogenation method
Because titanium sponge with higher purity is relatively soft at room temperature and pressure, and has greater toughness, it is difficult to mechanically crush it directly to make finer titanium powder, and titanium will become brittle and easily broken after hydrogen absorption. Therefore, the United States, Germany, Japan and other countries have developed a process for preparing pure titanium powder by hydrogenation and dehydrogenation by taking advantage of the characteristics of titanium that can quickly absorb a large amount of hydrogen and become brittle at a certain temperature.
Titanium powder and its alloy powders with good quality and fine particle size can be obtained through the hydrogenation dehydrogenation process. Therefore, the hydrogenation dehydrogenation method is mostly used in the fields with higher product performance requirements and lower production costs.
2. Metal reduction method
This kind of powder has large output, low price, good powder plasticity, suitable for cold forming, and is the main raw material for the production of general corrosion resistant products.
3. Centrifugal atomization method
The centrifugal atomization method to prepare titanium powder essentially uses the centrifugal force generated by the rotation to spin out the molten titanium, so as to obtain high-purity spherical titanium powder, and the powder density can be adjusted by the rotation speed of the rotating electrode. The titanium produced by the rotating electrode method Powder as a raw material can produce titanium alloy parts with high relative density and good mechanical properties, but the cost of titanium powder produced by this method is high, so it can generally only be used in the aerospace field.
4. Mechanical crushing method
The mechanical pulverization method mainly relies on crushing, crushing and grinding to mechanically pulverize bulk metal into powder.
The titanium sponge prepared by the method of sodium reduction is pulverized by a ball mill to obtain irregular titanium powder with a chlorine content and an oxygen content of about 2%, and the particle size is relatively coarse. However, the titanium sponge prepared by magnesium reduction is mostly large titanium lumps, which can only be coarsely crushed, and it is difficult to obtain titanium powder by directly crushing it mechanically.
5. Gas atomization method
The gas atomization method uses high-speed airflow to break up the molten metal stream, which can be dispersed only by overcoming the bonding force between liquid metal atoms, while mechanical pulverization uses mechanical action to break the bond between solid metal atoms. Therefore, the external force required for atomizing powder is much smaller than that of mechanical pulverization, and the energy consumption is relatively small. It is an energy-saving and economical powder production method.
With the maturity and development of powder preparation technology, hydrogenation dehydrogenation and atomization production methods have become the main application technologies in the titanium powder production industry.
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