Scientists have developed a new super strong structural metal that could be used to make more fuel-efficient cars, aircraft and other transportation vehicles. The new metal has a very high stiffness to weight ratio and is made up of magnesium infused with ceramic silicon carbide nanoparticles. Not only could this metal be used in making lighter transportation vehicles, which would increase fuel-efficiency, but it could also be used in mobile devices and other consumer electronics and goods. These scientists discovered a new method to disperse and stabilise nanoparticles in molten metals which could lead to even more lighter metals than their new discovery.
“It’s been proposed that nanoparticles could really enhance the strength of metals without damaging their plasticity, especially light metals like magnesium, but no groups have been able to disperse ceramic nanoparticles in molten metals until now,” said the principal investigator Xiaochun Li, from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
Structural metals are important in things like vehicles acting like a foundation keeping the rest of the structure in order and intact, kind of like your skeleton. Making the structure lighter yet just as strong is an advantage in many ways other than just fuel-efficiency. The discovery was published in the science journal “Nature” which is in the source links below. You can head over to their site to read their report if you want to delve deeper into the subject matter.
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