5 Surprising Facts about…Titanium Dioxide

5 Surprising Facts about…Titanium Dioxide

5 Surprising Facts about…Titanium Dioxide

1) Titanium ore was first discovered in 1791 in Cornwall by an English clergyman, William Gregor (The identification of the oxide was made a few years later by a German chemist, M.H. Klaproth). 

Gregor discovered titanium in the stream that runs through the valley just south of Manaccan (pronounced Man-ak-ann) Parish. The location is commemorated by a plaque placed next to a bridge. The mineral ilmenite, an iron titanium oxide, was a constituent of the ore identified by William Gregor; it has an alternative name manaccanite, derived from Manaccan.

Cornwall is also the home to some of Imerys Kaolin’s unique clay deposits – the county has a plethora of mineral heritage including historical Tin and Copper industries.

Credit: Britannica and Beverley Dingle (Imerys Kaolin Technology Analyst)

Find out more about the Cornish Parish of Manaccan in this blog and Image Credit: Titanium Rings Forever


2) No-one depends on the pigment as much as the coatings industry.

“Around 55 % of all titanium-dioxide is used for coatings, followed by the plastics (25 %) and the paper (9%) industry. You will also find it in cosmetics, tooth paste, sun lotion and printing inks, even though the global consumption share for these applications is rather small. “ Credit: European Coatings

3) Hikes in prices of titanium dioxide have inflated to as high as +35% since mid-2016 to mid-2017

The surge in TiO2 price has had profound impact on coating producers worldwide.

Cuts in supply have added to the pressures on the Titanium Dioxide market, in particular a fire at the Huntsman TiO2 facility in Finland in February 2017 and significantly reduced exports of pigment from China due to stricter environmental regulations enforced by the Chinese government this year.

Credit: ICIS


4) Never has there been a product as powerful as Opacilite in reducing titanium dioxide in decorative paints

Introducing the heroic product… OpaciliteTM

This powerful kaolin can significantly reduce Titanium Dioxide pigment costs and relieve titanium dioxide availability issues for coatings and inks producers. Opacilite  has been proven to reduce TiOby upto 20%.

Opacilite™ flash calcined kaolin offers:-

  • Titanium dioxide extension
  • Excellent wet opacity
  • Outstanding dry hiding
  • Durable
  • Effective above and below coating CPVC
  • For use in high quality matt and silk paints.

For more information on how OpaciliteTM can be the hero to your paint formulation click here or email kaolin.emea@imerys.com

5) Major changes in the TiO2 Supplier Market.

Large restructuring has seen Titanium Dioxide producers consolidate production in 2015-2016. Today, the key TiO2 players are: Tronox, Chemours, Venator, Lomon Billions and Kronos.

Credit: European Coatings



Published on: 22 Nov 2017 

Product Spotlight


Supreme™ premium kaolin from IMERYS gives multiple benefits when used in decorative matt wall paints, functioning both as an opacifying extender and also as a rheology modifier.
For further information please click here