Will Xiaomi's self-developed Titan alloy also be requisitioned by the state?

Xiaomi’s self-developed titanium alloy, currently the only domestic car manufacturer with self-developed alloy production, will it be requisitioned by the country like the steel wire produced by Jili and the carbon fiber produced by Guangwei?

Debunking the Hype Around Xiaomi’s “Titan Alloy”

The study of aluminum alloys has been ongoing worldwide for over a century. The development of cast aluminum alloys is particularly advanced. Xiaomi’s so-called Titan alloy is essentially the Chinese standard ZL106 cast aluminum alloy with a slight adjustment in composition. This involves reducing the copper content to slightly lower the strength but increase corrosion resistance. ZL106 is originally used for high-strength aluminum castings like engine cylinder heads and pistons. The adjustment in this alloy’s composition is not a significant technological advancement, and it’s also the result of an enterprise acquired by Xiaomi.

It’s quite unimpressive how Xiaomi simply renames these existing technologies to mislead the public.

To elaborate further, current patents are not directly linked to the level of technological innovation; they are more about market or legal maneuvers. My point is that the so-called Titan alloy lacks technical difficulty and innovation. Any engineer with a background in metallurgy would know that silicon enhances the casting properties of aluminum alloys but adversely affects toughness; copper increases the strength of aluminum alloys but reduces corrosion resistance, and for this reason, aviation-grade hard aluminum profiles are even clad in pure aluminum to improve corrosion resistance; manganese and titanium can refine grains and increase toughness. These principles have been thoroughly researched by predecessors, and the capabilities and flaws of various alloys are well understood. Alloy compositions suitable for various scenarios have become standardized. For instance, Tesla has long implemented large-scale integral body casting for automotive bodies. Do you think Tesla hasn’t adjusted the composition of its die-cast aluminum alloys? Because adjusting alloy compositions is a normal part of the production process. So, does Xiaomi’s production process really deserve to be glorified with the name “Titan”?

Xiaomi’s patent is titled: Heat Treatment-Free Die-Cast Aluminum Alloy and Its Preparation Method and Application

A search in the National Intellectual Property Administration’s patent database for “Heat Treatment-Free Die-Cast Aluminum Alloy” yields 10 records.

Of course, this is just a name. If you search for “Die-Cast Aluminum Alloy” alone, you will find over 500 records.

Unless Xiaomi can prove that its patented alloy has disruptive performance and is highly irreplaceable, it is unlikely to be requisitioned by the state.

I’m familiar with this, it’s professional. One Titan Steel Ingot = 3 Titan Godly Iron Ingots + Eternal Flame + Eternal Earth + Eternal Shadow.

This can make the Mech Road Tyrant, and this car looks cool wherever it goes.

Oh, wait, you’re talking about Xiaomi alloy materials. I think it should make sense; good cars use good materials, it should be pretty powerful. Can Titan not be powerful?

Wishing all Mi fans to use Xiaomi phones, drive Xiaomi cars, and live a cost-effective life.

Pollen users use Huawei phones, drive HarmonyOS cars, and live a vegetable life.

What’s all the fuss about?

Is it possible that the collaborating entity is a national key laboratory, which is inherently a national team [doge]?

The person asking this question,

How much advertising fees has Xiaomi received?

Can’t Xiaomi use the advertising fees for genuine research and development? It’s just a company that shells out.

Yet another company that you can’t even imagine.

Xiaomi’s automotive venture will only produce bubbles within 5 years. It’s destined to fail.

I’ve seen those who have been scrutinized by the industry, But I haven’t seen those who voluntarily come forward seeking fame. If they are truly that strong, can they hold their ground?

Clearly, you are ignorant about alloys and patents.

When it comes to naming, I can do that too. I bought a piece of iron and called it “Xuantian Zhenbi.” It’s a programmable memory metal that can be controlled with code to transform its liquid metal state into any desired shape and then solidify it into Zhenbi armor for vehicle protection. Pretty cool, right? I came up with all of this. Actually, it’s just for applying car film.

Aluminum Alloys and Titanium Alloy Claims

It’s quite a coincidence; I’ve been working with aluminum alloys, magnesium alloys, and casting for over a decade, and I’m quite familiar with integrated die-casting materials and machines. In recent years, various automotive manufacturers and suppliers have developed heat-treatment-free integrated die-cast aluminum alloys. Tesla, Alcoa, Rheinfelden alloys from Germany, Jiao Tong University, Lizhong, Hongtu, and others have corresponding grades. Below is a list of several grades that I compiled earlier. Of course, this data was compiled some time ago and may be somewhat outdated (for example, Jiao Tong University named their alloys the JDA series, and some information in the table is outdated or incomplete).

Here are some integrated heat-treatment-free die-casting alloys I compiled earlier (some information may be outdated or incomplete, not updated according to the current situation).

I used to think that academics were often too storytelling-oriented. Now, when I hear about Xiaomi claiming to have self-developed “Titan Alloy” and the “9100T die-casting machine,” it makes me realize their storytelling abilities are truly eye-opening.

Let me put it this way: if a scientific paper submitted to an SCI journal dared to make such unfounded claims and ignore the extensive achievements of predecessors in the field, that paper would certainly need significant revisions.

As for the name “Titan Alloy,” I have no idea where it came from. This aluminum alloy contains titanium, and the English word for titanium is, well, “titanium.” So is it called “Titan Alloy” just because it has about 0.05-0.2% titanium content, which isn’t significantly different from many other aluminum alloys?

I’m not sure if the people below are trying to fool Elon Musk, or if Elon Musk himself came up with such claims.

In recent car exhibitions, there have always been new adjectives introduced: 2000MPa hot-formed steel like that used in nuclear submarines, aerospace-grade thermal insulation aerogels, and nano-scale ceramic insulation layers. These are all well-established materials.

To brag, it has to be on the internet.

The academic community is still too conservative.

Xiaomi can be considered as a supply chain integrator at most. When have they ever invented groundbreaking products for the new era? Don’t overhype it.

Mature supply chains, spend some money to customize something, slap a label on it, and it’s considered “self-developed.” When did it become a trend to heavily promote “self-development” for everything you do? Since individuals are so capable, why not focus on achieving controlled nuclear fusion breakthroughs instead? It’s hard to stay low-key. When making products, it’s essential to be down-to-earth, deliver quality products to the market, and enhance reliability and usability in various complex practical scenarios, rather than getting self-indulgent during the PowerPoint stage. Nowadays, people are generally well-educated, and even if they’re just casually browsing on their phones, they can roughly understand the industry. Please, all you businesses, when promoting your products, respect the intelligence and perspective of potential customers.

Advanced Martensitic Steel Achieved by Beijing Institute of Technology’s Lv Zhaoping Team in 2017

In 2017, the high-strength martensitic steel developed by Lv Zhaoping’s team at Beijing Institute of Technology reached 2GPa. Unlike Xiaomi’s industrial-style mixing ratio, their research used elemental composition to induce the formation of an ordered nano-sized coherent precipitate phase during the aging process of the martensitic steel. The mismatch with the matrix was no more than 0.04%, with an average size of 3 nanometers.

By achieving minimal mismatch and a relatively large interphase boundary energy, they achieved high strength. It seems that this was one of the top ten scientific discoveries in China in 2017. Therefore, Xiaomi’s cooking-style mixing ratio is not worthy of national attention. In the industrial sector, such innovations are remarkable. In the research community, who cares about your trial and error, unless you have created a materials genome and used machine learning and neural networks to screen materials.

The materials research community has developed numerous materials, which have exceeded performance standards long ago. However, the industrial sector has only one requirement: cost-effectiveness.

Collaboration between the research and industrial sectors is challenging. One side may think you are misappropriating funds, while the other may feel you are feeding grass to make them milk. Overall, the industrial sector is impressive, while the research community appears relatively mundane, almost like cooking without proposing its own mechanism.

Da Chun, you are different from others, don’t focus your thoughts on studying.

Xiaomi: The Role Model for Us, the Role Model in the Marketing Industry

Xiaomi has always been our role model, a role model in the marketing industry.

Xiaomi has not released its 2023 annual report yet, but in 2022, it achieved a revenue of 280 billion yuan with a research and development investment of 16.2 billion yuan.

In 2022, Huawei reported a revenue of 642.3 billion yuan with an R&D investment of 161.5 billion yuan.

Let’s not talk about all those boasts of being far ahead; if you don’t have the resources, you can’t wear such big pants. In terms of Huawei’s scale, their R&D expenses are only 1/4 of Xiaomi’s.

Without the financial investment, it’s impossible to research anything.

If you want to talk about researching titanium-tantalum alloys, let me be clear, titanium alloys, that’s nonsense, it’s like making a fart sound.

Xiaomi labels everything, and everything can be labeled Xiaomi.