There are days when we want to be strong, good-looking, popular and, heck, really feel like we're making a difference in the world. That is, we wish we were titanium.

1. It does everything better than us

If you were a metal, that is. When Sia sang "I won't fall/I am titanium", she knew what she was talking about.

Titanium is so tough (like Sia) that it's used in some of the world's most challenging places – and sometimes even out of this world. When metal has to perform in really, really cold environments, like outer space, or in really, really hot ones, like an airplane engine, titanium can be the only metal for the job – because of its high strength and light weight. Much for the same reason, it's used in hip and knee replacements, as well as high-end jewelry. Even golf clubs can be made of titanium, proving it can do just about anything – except take three strokes off your game. We can't help you with that.

Paint pots Paint pots
Titanium - immune to tarnish and oh-so pretty

2. Like the kid we wanted to be in high school, it's not only smart and tough, but looks great, too

Titanium is incredibly strong for its weight, won't tarnish, and has beauty unparalleled by anything this side of Foxfire – meaning that designers are using it more and more for long-lasting, hypoallergenic jewelry. James Bond's watch in Skyfall was titanium and look what it did for him. If your wedding ring is made from titanium, you can be sure it'll last at least as long as your marriage. Congratulations!

But titanium's beauty isn't just skin deep. At Rio Tinto, our titanium ore comes from a mine in eastern Quebec. After it's smelted and processed into metallic form, titanium gets tougher than Dwayne Johnson – that's right, stronger than The Rock – even back in his wrestling days. It stands up to air, water and even certain acids. If only we could all be as powerful, pretty and resilient as this super metal. Or even The Rock. Sigh.

The wizarding world The wizarding world
Sadly, titanium did not make a star appearance in J.K. Rowling's iconic series

3. Like Harry Potter, it's "The Chosen One" (of the mineral world, that is)

The vast majority of mined titanium ore, including ours, becomes titanium dioxide, a powder known for its brilliant thick white colour. Titanium dioxide in paint lets blues be … well, true blue. It makes reds and oranges run hot and bright. In nail polish, it creates a dense sheen, and in magazines, it keeps every page glossy. That's one cool powder.

And it's made right here in Canada.

Rio Tinto's Havre-Sainte-Pierre mine in eastern Quebec is home to the largest ilmenite deposit in the world. Ilmenite is the mineral used to ultimately produce titanium. And our Sorel-Tracy plant, just over an hour from Montreal (as big as 100 American football fields!), smelts ilmenite for processing into titanium.

Outer space Outer space
Check back soon to hear more about our exploration plans for Tatooine

4. It's bringing us closer to a galaxy far, far away

We can't confirm this, but we're betting Luke Skywalker used titanium – Han too. Because what else would you use to make the Millennium Falcon? (Fine, maybe aluminium).

3D printing is making the world of the future a reality today – with titanium, including ours. These printers can generate complex, durable titanium parts that can do a lot of different things. Boeing is already using them with an aim to save $3 million per plane, while Lockheed Martin printed a titanium part for a satellite fuel tank in an eighth of the time it would've taken to manufacture the usual way.

Obi-Wan would be proud.

Cars Cars
Light, resilient and corrosion-resistant - titanium is perfect for cars

5. It makes cars, planes and trucks lighter (which, bonus, helps the environment)

But titanium isn't just important to Luke Skywalker: it's also vital to today's automotive and aerospace industries. When it's smelted and processed into metallic form, titanium is light, resilient and corrosion-resistant. This makes it perfect for everything from mission-critical parts in cars, including seat belt fasteners to jet engines.

Because it's light weight, it can also help reduce fuel consumption, letting planes and cars go farther with less impact on our environment.

However you look at it, titanium is helping us reach for the stars.

Learn more about ours.