Key to the High Performance Steel and Titanium Alloy Industry
Vanadium demand is directly linked to global steel consumption, with approximately 85% to 90% of global vanadium production consumed in the steel industry. Vanadium is primarily used as an alloy to steels in order to increase the strength and improve the high temperature performance of steel.
Reliant industries include construction, aerospace, ships, automobiles, hand and industrial tools. Vanadium is also used in the chemicals industry.
Vanadium is used to strengthen steel and titanium. About 85% of vanadium is used in the high performance steel industry. The other main vanadium use is in titanium alloys, which generally contain about 5% vanadium to make them strong as well as light. About 10% of vanadium, in the form of high purity pentoxide, is converted into master alloys that are consumed in titanium alloy production.
Vanadium is used in materials that have important end uses including:
- Automotive sector - in the body structure, engine and chassis - to make cars stronger, safer and yet lighter;
- Construction sector is the biggest consumer of steel products, and vanadium plays an essential role as an alloy of steel to provide strength. It is added to steels designed to resist fire and to increase steel's tensile strength;
- Reinforcing bar to strengthen concrete structures including buildings, tunnels and bridges;
- Aircraft components including landing gear using ultra high strength steel, and airframe and engine parts using titanium alloys;
- Hand tools - spanners, screwdrivers and other engineering tools have vanadium added with chromium to provide strong, wear resistant tools; and
- Vanadium flow battery (VFB) use vanadium electrolyte to store energy and enable wider use of renewable power generation.