Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Metallic foams

04.12.2003


INASMET Technological Centre is working on a project to develop metallic foams. Metal foams and cellular metals have become one the preferred research fields in mew materials in recent times. Given their special structure and extreme lightness, they have enormous potential for use in a never-ending list of applications in diverse industrial sectors.



Metallic foams are, as their name indicates, metallic materials with a porous structure. They can take either the form an open structure of interconnected pores, similar to a bath sponge or a closed structure of pores not connected to each other.

They have very low density (between 0.03-0.2 g/cc) at the same time showing some of the properties of the metal of which they are made up, together with other characteristics due to its particular structure. Thus, they are materials with a combination of very special physicochemical and mechanical properties, to such an extent that the series of properties they show is not currently covered by other materials, at the same time as they improve their respective applications.


In fact, the term best suited to define this type of materials would be ’multifuntionality’. They can be used in structural applications (given their excellent rigidity/weight ratio, durability, etc.) or in energy absorption of impacts and explosions (due to their capacity for isotropic absorption of energy at low and constant stress). They can also be used as noise and vibration absorbers and heat interchangers, as a basis for catalisers, etc.

Manufacture of closed-pore metal foams is almost exclusively centred on aluminium foams, while other alloys need to be researched and developed further (steel, copper, etc). There are a number of manufacturing processes and, using one or another method, sheets of foam material or complex shapes can be obtained.

Sheet material is used in a number of applications: reducing noise on roads and bridges, fire protection in buildings, impact-resisting structures for automobiles, etc. A second method enables the manufacture of complex shapes of metal foam with a solid external ’skin’. This enables the production of an endless array of applications with complex geometrical shapes. An example of the application of sandwich-type parts is in the majority of impact-resisting structures used in automobiles for improved passive safety (crash-boxes, doors, roofs), as well as ultralight structures.

Unlike closed-pore metal foams, the manufacture of open-pore foams is mainly based on the use of filler material and polymeric moulds the shapes of which are reproduced in metal, with the subsequent elimination of the mould. These types of structures can be made in almost any type of metal (Al, Cu, Mg, Fe, steel, etc.), both by casting and by processes of pulvimetallurgy, chemical deposition, etc.

In conclusion, metal foams can be seen as a future technology with high growth prospects in industrial use in the short- and medium term, given that they respond perfectly to the exigencies from a variety of markets: reducing weight in structures, safety in transport, noise reduction, yield enhancement in industrial processes, etc. All this at a competitive cost, which contributes substantially to business efficiency and competitiveness.

Contact :
Haridian Cubillo Oliva
INASMET
hcubillo@inasmet.es
(+34) 943 003700

Garazi Andonegi | Basque research
Further information:
http://www.basqueresearch.com/berria_irakurri.asp?Gelaxka=1_1&Berri_Kod=366&hizk=I
http://www.inasmet.es

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Breaking bad metals with neutrons
16.01.2018 | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory

nachricht White graphene makes ceramics multifunctional
16.01.2018 | Rice University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

Im Focus: A thermometer for the oceans

Measurement of noble gases in Antarctic ice cores

The oceans are the largest global heat reservoir. As a result of man-made global warming, the temperature in the global climate system increases; around 90% of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

White graphene makes ceramics multifunctional

16.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

Breaking bad metals with neutrons

16.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

ISFH-CalTeC is “designated test centre” for the confirmation of solar cell world records

16.01.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>