June 28, 2011

Tapping Titanium’s Colorful Potential

A new, cost-effective process for coloring titanium can be used in manufacturing products from sporting equipment to color-coded nuclear waste containers.

"The new method uses an electrochemical solution to produce colored titanium, improving on an older, time-consuming and expensive method where heat was used to develop a colored layer," says Gregory Jerkiewicz, a professor in the Department of Chemistry.

Dr. Jerkiewicz's new technique can be finely tuned to produce over 80 different shades of basic colors. In addition, the colored titanium produced using the new method remains crack-free and stable for many years.

Colored titanium has the potential to be used in the production of everyday objects like spectacle frames, jewelry, golf clubs and high-performance bicycles.

Industries including healthcare, aviation and the military could use the technology to create items like color-coded surgical tools, brightly colored airplane parts, and stealth submarines made from blue titanium.


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