What is Titanium dioxide?
Titanium dioxide, also known as titanium(IV) oxide or titania, is the naturally occurring oxide of titanium, chemical formula TiO
2. When used as a pigment, it is called titanium white, Pigment White 6 (PW6), or CI 77891. Generally, it is sourced from ilmenite, rutile, and anatase. It has a wide range of applications, including paint, sunscreen, and food coloring. When used as a food coloring, it has E number E171. World production in 2014 exceeded 9 million metric tons. It has been estimated that it is used in two-thirds of all pigments. And pigments based on the oxide have been valued at $13.2 billion.
Applications of Titanium dioxide
The most important application areas are paints and varnishes as well as paper and plastics, which account for about 80% of the world’s titanium dioxide consumption. Other pigment applications such as printing inks, fibers, rubber, cosmetic products, and food account for another 8%. The rest is used in other applications, for instance the production of technical pure titanium, glass and glass ceramics, electrical ceramics, metal patinas, catalysts, electric conductors, and chemical intermediates
It occurs in nature as the minerals rutile and anatase. Additionally two high-pressure forms are known minerals: a monoclinic baddeleyite-like form known as akaogiite, and the other is an orthorhombic α-PbO2-like form known as brookite, both of which can be found at the Ries crater in Bavaria.It is mainly sourced from ilmenite ore. This is the most widespread form of titanium dioxide-bearing ore around the world. Rutile is the next most abundant and contains around 98% titanium dioxide in the ore. The metastable anatase and brookite phases convert irreversibly to the equilibrium rutile phase upon heating above temperatures in the range 600–800 °C