The Soviet Union Helped Create The SR-71, Unknowingly
The specific ore, utile ore, used to create titanium is found in few parts of the world. It’s a sandy soil that’s difficult to locate. One of the largest supplies is in Russia. The U.S. purchased much of the ore used to produce the SR-71 airframe from Russia through foreign countries and third party companies. The U.S. needed large quantities because not only did they build over 30 SR-71s, but the alloy is very brittle and breaks easily. This led to frustration on the assembly line when many pieces broke before they could be assembled.