Research by the University of Queensland in collaboration with the private sector promises to cut the cost of titanium manufacturing to around the cost of manufacturing with stainless steel.
The Courier Mail reports that the University of Queensland is collaborating with Ferra Engineering, Chinese firm Baosteel, and the Queensland government on the project.
According to Lead researcher Professor Ma Qian, Honorary Professor of Materials Engineering at UQ, it may be possible to make the cost of using titanium even cheaper than using stainless steel. This would represent a cost cut of about 40 per cent.
According to Des Hill of Ferra Engineering, the company stands to gain significantly from the project and increase its competitiveness on a global scale.
Ferra Engineering has plans to lead the world and use 3D manufacturing in a large-scale, commercial operation.
“We’ve got some major overseas defence contracts and this technology that we’re working on will make these contracts a lot more cost efficient for us,” he told the Courier Mail.
This includes a $200 million agreement with Lockheed Martin to make titanium components for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.