Most people understand that steel is one very strong metal. Yet, there is titanium and tungsten, too. What are the differences among these three really strong metals? Are they not all some type of steel? Why should it matter what type of metal you want to order from a steel company or a tungsten supplier? Answers to these questions follow.
Steel Is a Metal Alloy
Steel is made from iron ore. Various amounts of iron ore are combined with other elements to create steel. Steel is not an element in its own right. More iron ore makes the steel weaker and easier to mold, while less, combined with the right metal elements, makes it harder. Steel is not tungsten, nor is is titanium. However, a steel hacksaw can cut a pure tungsten rod with minimal effort. Steel can also resist rust from all sources of water.
Tungsten Is a Very Rare Element
Tungsten is valuable because it is extremely rare, it has the highest melting point, and it has the highest boiling point of all metal elements on the periodic chart. If formed and polished, it is shinier than silver with a brighter, glossier look. For that reason, many jewelers seek pure tungsten from tungsten suppliers to shape into wedding bands.
Titanium Is a Chemical Element
Titanium is a chemical element in its own right. It is slightly stronger than most steel alloys, but it is lighter in weight. Where tungsten resists all fire and heat outside a laboratory that can produce such extreme temperatures, titanium resists salty sea water and chlorine, making it ideal for sea crafts and anything that will be near a pool.
Why You Should Not Confuse Them
You never want to confuse these metals. Each has its own ability to resist other elements in nature, such as fire and water. Each has its own price tag as well. Tungsten, because of its rarity, is the most expensive and precious. Titanium is slightly stronger than steel and resists the heat that melts steel. Both tungsten and titanium can be added to steel, if you wanted to combine all three to create a super-metal.
However, you should never confuse them when you are attempting experiments in a lab, or you are attempting to order a pure substance from a steel production company. The steel production company will not have significant amounts of titanium or tungsten on hand, and the titanium and tungsten suppliers will not carry iron ore and steel products.