As Airbus and Boeing compete for the fastest, cleanest, lightest, and cheapest aircraft in the skies, titanium start-up out of MIT called Avanti Metal might be able to help. The company uses MIT research to commercialize an improved process of making titanium. If they’re successful, reducing the current price of $40-and-rising to even $25 a pound could mean significant profit for Avanti. Especially if the estimated cost of production actually ends up being only $3 per pound.
In A Cleaner, Cheaper Route to Titanium, we discover that "Titanium is naturally abundant." So why are prices rising faster than 747s? "Processing titanium oxide found in the ground to make a usable metal is slow and produces toxic waste. ‘The price of titanium has gone through the roof,’ says Corby Anderson, director of the Center for Advanced Mineral and Metallurgical Processing at the University of Montana." When Avanti starts producing titanium more efficiently, the skies will be full of their new invention, saving Boeing and Airbus tons of money.