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  • Titanium Slag
  • Mines Producing Titanium Slag

Titanium slag, or metallurgical coke, is produced in smelter plants where it is tapped from furnaces . It is an upgraded white pigment derived from ilmenite for the making of plastics, paper and paint products. Titanium slag is highly composed of titanium dioxide which is mainly used in the making of TiO2 pigment.

Titanium is Most Commonly Found With Iron
Titanium is an element that is most commonly found with iron within a mineral oxide known as ilmenite, as well as in a less widely available ore known as rutile. Iron ore with a high content of titanium is first processed for its iron content, the material left over is known as slag.

Titanium Slag Replaces Dependence on Natural Ilmenite
Titanium slag is a major source of raw material that is supplied to pigment companies. It comprises around 39 percent of their feedstock that can be compared to 33 percent from natural ilmenite. Titanium slag is used as a replacement of natural rutile in the same way as it is a replacement for synthetic rutile This means the metal and pigment industries around the world no longer have to rely solely on natural minerals. The main advantage in using titanium slag is because of its high titanium content, its low generation of waste, its suitability for use in chloride and sulphate processing and its low chemical cost.

The two Main Processes Used to Produce Titanium Dioxide
There are two commonly used processes used in the manufacturing of titanium dioxide pigment from titanium slag. These processes being the chloride and sulphate processes. Both processes produce the same final result , namely, titanium dioxide pigment anatase grade (TDPAG) and titanium dioxide pigment rutile grade (TDPRG).

One of the most common processes used to create Titanium slag entails the titanium concentrate being processed by means of a closed Electric Arc Furnace (EAF). The titanium slag produced by this means is first cooled before being crushed into a powder. It is then packaged. The by-products from this method of titanium slag production include iron powder and pig iron. The EAF process of producing titanium slag has the advantage of only occupying a small space, despite it being able keep up a high capacity production level producing better grades of titanium. This high quality slag is ideal for TiO2 production as it reduces the need to use concentrated sulphuric acid by a third.

Titanium Slag Remains the Main Source of Titanium Dioxide
Titanium slag is a most important material in the production of many titanium products, particularly white titanium as its high metal content reduces operating as well as capital costs in the production of these materials.
The W.A. Kwinana Plant Produces 60,000 Tonnes of Titanium Dioxide a Year
Iluka and Tronox are the two leading producers of titanium dioxide in Australia. The Tronox Kwinana plant south of Perth in Western Australia processes around 50 percent of the rutile produced at its nearby Chandala plant. The Kwinana plant produces around 60,000 tonnes of titanium dioxide a year.

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