The British Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on Monday that its Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (officially abbreviated to Dstl) had, in cooperation with the University of Sheffield, developed of a radical new method of producing titanium parts. Dstl has so far invested almost £30 000 in this research and development programme. Titanium combines high strength and corrosion resistance with low weight. It is as strong as steel but is only 50% of the weight of steel. But it is some ten times more expensive than steel and it is difficult and expensive to make titanium products. The new technology is called FAST-forge and cuts the number of steps required to manufacture titanium parts from 40 to just two. The technology has been proved at the laboratory scale and a pilot plant (described by the UK MoD as “large-scale”) has been completed and will soon start operation.