A company called Avanti Metals claims to have developed a process by which it can refine titanium for many times less than the cost of the current method, while at the same time eliminating the chlorine gas by-product that keeps titanium production ecologically “dirty”. Their own estimates are that they’ll be able to sell the metal at $25 per pound (titanium currently trades at $40/lb.), though they say even that amount would be conservative. My dad was pissed when he heard about this, having just dropped a fortune on titanium golf clubs; I’d sure hate to know anyone that just bought a plane.
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In researching titanium, I learned of a metal I’d never heard of before: wolframite, candidate for coolest word, 2006.
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