How is the Titanium used in Automobiles?

How is the Titanium used in Automobiles?

Due to its light weight and high strength, titanium has been used as an internal combustion engine part to improve its performance, so it has attracted people’s attention for a long time.

In recent years, due to environmental problems, not only four-wheelers (sedans), but also two-wheelers (motorcycles or peddlers) have been strictly regulated, and there is a higher and higher demand for low exhaust emission technology and low fuel cost technology of the car. On both sides of the spectrum, the technology needed to improve the performance of the motion and to reduce the cost of fuel requires that the parts be titanium.

When used as auto parts, titanium has many excellent properties, such as high tensile strength and yield strength, high fatigue strength, low density, and low thermal expansion coefficient, etc. In addition, the use of titanium in the automobile industry can greatly reduce the weight of the car, reduce its fuel consumption, protect the environment and reduce noise.

Engine valve

In recent years, various automobile companies have been developing cheap titanium for engine valves, and some of them have reached mass quantification. More than one-third of the manufacturing cost of titanium materials is the price of sponge titanium. If the same amount of titanium is used to produce processed materials, the price will naturally decrease. In this case, a cheap Ti-6Al-4V base alloy was developed.

Engine valve
Engine valve

Exhaust pipe and muffler

So far, the exhaust pipe and muffler are mostly made of common steel, stainless steel, aluminum alloy, FRP (Fiber Reinforced Plastic), etc. These parts are large structural parts of the vehicle body, which are easy to realize the light weight of the vehicle, and are important for reducing fuel cost, the output power of the engine and improving the driving safety.

Under the high temperature of 400 ℃ above, titanium has better heat resistance than aluminum, and its specific strength is higher than that of steel, and it is also easy to achieve lightweight. Titanium’s coefficient of thermal expansion and Young’s modulus are less than ferritic steel, and the stress produced by thermal expansion and contraction is reduced by half, which is beneficial to thermal cycle fatigue performance.

Besides, the muffler is the external part of the car body, which is more novel and fashionable if titanium is used. In particular, titanium’s unique surface texture is most favored by the market. In use, titanium can change into various diffraction colors, which is impossible for steel. With the lightening of the two-wheel vehicle, the sound of using titanium for exhaust pipe and muffler which has great influence on the output power and driving safety is higher. However, these parts are all large parts of the car body, and the increased weight of materials will inevitably affect the price of the finished products, so the price should be lower than the price of the engine.

Titanium Muffler
Titanium Muffler

Development of new alloys for auto parts

The above mentioned are all developed titanium alloy used in automobile parts. On the other hand, the development of low-cost titanium alloy is also more active, one of which is the development of Super-TIX series alloy. The Super-TIX series includes Ti-Al-Fe and Ti-Fe-O-N alloy series. Ti-Al-Fe alloy group is mostly used in known alloys without vanadium and molybdenum and is replaced by cheap iron, which is suitable for use in the process of temperature rise.

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