Key point: Although powder metallurgy titanium alloys currently only have a niche market, the emergence of economical sources of titanium powder will make these processes very attractive. High structural standards in aviation design enable powder metallurgy
Although powder metallurgy titanium alloys currently only have a niche market, the emergence of economical sources of titanium powder will make these processes very attractive. The high structural standards in aviation design make it difficult for powder metallurgy titanium alloys to appear in the aviation market for the time being. They may first appear in military ground vehicle armor, and their structural requirements are not as strict. Although this will not directly affect the aviation market, it can lower prices by reducing demand for sponge titanium. Powder metallurgy titanium alloy is most likely to enter the aviation market as a new way of rolling finished products, ultimately replacing the limited near net shape castings and other forms of produced components currently used in aircraft bodies. The material certification will have the greatest impact on the introduction speed of powder metallurgy titanium alloys. The cost and difficulty of the certification process will lead companies to avoid using powder metallurgy titanium alloy products in aircraft as much as possible, unless they have important application history in other fields.
At present, the main application of powder metallurgy titanium alloy in the aviation field is engine manufacturing. However, due to pollution control issues, powder metallurgy is usually used when there is no other way to produce the required alloy. In addition, it is also used to manufacture some small components in military aircraft. To achieve wider application in the aviation industry, powder metallurgy requires manufacturers of titanium alloys and their rolled products to make significant investments at the source of the supply chain. Titanium powder is easily contaminated, flammable, and explosive, and it may take several years to acquire relevant knowledge of safe handling and the development of facilities. At present, titanium powder is extremely expensive, and emerging production technologies are expected to make it cheaper than sponge titanium in the future. Using other new technologies to replace some expensive processes currently used is expected to achieve cost savings, thereby promoting the rapid development and wider application of powder metallurgy titanium and titanium alloys.
Keywords: Titanium alloy aviation titanium alloy
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