Saturday, August 13, 2011

Titanium Dioxide

Probably the most popular pigment for an egg tempera artist is Titanium Dioxide. This opaque white is used on its own as well in many mixes to lighten, cool, and provide opacity. This pigment has so very many uses! For instance, check the ingredients in your tube of toothpaste.

The rutile form of titanium dioxide (tetragonal form) is the most popular although there are many derivations in different crystal forms. The anatase form is sometimes used.

Common Name: Titanium White

Alternate Names: Titanium Oxide

Color Index: PW 6  77891

Composition: TiO2

Specific Gravity: 3.7 - 4.2

Refractive Index: 2.70

Particle Size: 0.25 - 0.40 ┬Ám

Synthetic Inorganic

Lightfastness: Lightfast

Toxicity: Keep away from foodstuffs and drinks. Do not eat, drink or smoke during work. Wash hands before breaks and at the end of work.
Do not inhale vapor/dust.

Supplier: Kremer (46200) $8.00/100g Titanium White Rutile

Timeline:
  • 1791 Discovered in Cornwald, England.
  • 1913 First commercial exploitation when manufactured by a fusion process.
  • 1918 Commercial production in Norway with a sulphuric acid process.
  • 1958 Development by a chloride process.
Titanium dioxide accounts for 70% of the total production volume of pigments worldwide. It is widely used to provide whiteness and opacity to products such as paints, plastics, papers, inks, foods, and toothpastes. It is also used in cosmetic and skin care products, and it is present in almost every sunblock, where it helps protect the skin from ultraviolet light.

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