A Nevada-based start-up company that's commercializing technology developed at Ames Lab is one of 14 companies in the Department of Energy's "America's Next Top Energy Innovator" contest. Iowa Powder Atomization Technologies (IPAT) is using gas atomization technology developed at Ames Laboratory to make titanium powder with processes that are ten times more efficient than traditional powder-making methods significantly lowering the cost of the powder to manufacturers. The powder form of titanium is easier to work with than having to cast the metal where manufacturers melt and pour liquid metal into molds particularly given titanium’s tendency to react with the materials used to form molds. Titanium’s strength, light weight, biocompatibility and resistance to corrosion make it ideal for use in a variety of parts from components for artificial limbs -- like those used by wounded veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan -- to military vehicle components, biomedical implants, aerospace fasteners and chemical plant valves.
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