Interest in metals has never been greater, with a rising gold and silver price meaning that we are looking at our precious metals in a way we never have before. Over the centuries we have used metals in different ways, and some of the more unusual metals would have been practically unknown in our grandparents’ time. One of these newer metals is titanium, which is being used increasingly in jewellery, watches and for many other uses too.
The element titanium is a British discovery. It was discovered by William Gregor as far back as 1791, and the mineral was named manaccanite. Later the same year a German chemist discovered the same element and he chose the name titanium in reference to the Titans of Greek mythology. This name stuck. Gregor was not a trained chemist or geologist; he was actually a Church of England vicar who had a huge interest in the subject. When he was posted to a parish in rural Cornwall, he made it his life’s mission to discover as much as he could about the local rocks.
Strength and Weight
Titanium has the greatest strength to weight ratio of all metals. This means that it is both extremely light and very strong. Because of this, titanium is often made into an alloy with other metals such as aluminium or iron, and is used for items as diverse as the mens Tissot PR100 watch range and the prosthetic limbs used by athletes competing in the Paralympics. The light weight of the metal makes it ideal for jewellery use, and watches such as the mens Tissor PR100 look chunky without being heavy.
The main use of titanium is to produce a pigment or colouring called titanium dioxide. This compound is bright white in colour and is used in toothpaste, plastics and paint. If you’ve ever applied one of those sunscreens which goes on white and does not rub into your face, chances are that you’ve been applying some titanium dioxide onto your skin. It is used in most of the waterproof sunscreens on the market.
One of the other properties of titanium is that it is very resistant to cracking or splitting. Because of this, it is the material of choice to use in spaceships and aircraft. The lightweight material can also make places more fuel efficient too. The titanium is used both in the construction of the frame of the aircraft and in internal parts such as rotor blades.
Allergies and Toxicity
Titanium jewellery is the best choice for people who have sensitive skin or allergies as it is the metal least likely to provoke a reaction. Rising gold and platinum prices have made titanium a more popular choice, and ranges made purely from alloys of the metal are beginning to appear on the market. Titanium is completely accepted by the body, meaning that it can be used for dental implants or other prosthetics without any risk that the body will reject the implant.
The Watch Hub has a range of attractive watches, such as the brilliant Mens Tissot PR100 Watch.