Information found on this page has been archived and is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. Please visit NRC's new site for the most recent information.
Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats by contacting us.
Titanium has several unique properties. This element is as strong as steel, yet it is approximately half the weight. Although titanium burns in both air and nitrogen, it does not corrode easily and is unaffected by acids, alkalis, and salt water.
Titanium alloys provide lightweight strength and have important applications in the aerospace industry where they must withstand harsh environmental conditions. Commercially, this element is used in the production of lightweight sporting equipment. Titanium oxide adds a sparkling touch to our precious sapphires and rubies.
In the medical industry, titanium's low level of reactivity has placed it in a highly valued position. Titanium is a constituent of various surgical implants such as pacemakers, heart valves, and artificial hip and knee joint replacements. Adding to this list of uses is Neuro II, a product recently developed by researchers at the National Research Council Canada (NRC). Neuro II is a unique, compact, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner for neurosurgery with a non-magnetic titanium operating table. This new-generation MRI scanner can be moved to the patient rather than having the patient brought to the scanner! The high resistance of titanium ensures that forces on the table, due to eddy currents as the MRI magnet approaches, are negligible. This new system enables the generation of timely, high-resolution MR images before, during and after surgery, which frequently changes the course of an operation as uncut tumourous tissue is often discovered.