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Materials sciences - an interdisciplinary research field

Materials sciences involves the research, development, characterization, manufacture and processing of materials.

Materials sciences- the basis

As an interdisciplinary field, materials sciences encompasseschemistry, physics, mineralogyand many other areas of science. As a result, it is also tied closely to copper, iron and steel.

The transition from natural materials such as stone, wood, ivory or leather to the targeted production of materials such as copper, steel or iron

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Copper, steel and iron were produced as early as the Neolithic, roughly around 4,300 B.C. Copper and iron were produced as far back as the New Stone Age, roughly 4,300 B.C. This was then followed by the transition to the Bronze Age. It wasn't until the Iron Age that apart from iron, steel and copper, aluminum was also produced using the Hall-Héroult process. For a long time, materials sciences was interested almost exclusively in metals such as iron, copper and steel. However, this has changed with the rediscovery of concrete. While the first, mass-produced plastic materials eventually attracted the interest of the broad public, materials sciences continues to carry out research into iron, copper and steel.

The first metals and the ancient times

Copper, steel and iron were the first metals that mankind became familiar with as it evolved. Copper is very easy to process. As a result, copper was already being used 10,000 years ago by the oldest known cultures 10,000. The era of large-scale copper use (between 3,000 and 5,000 B.C.) is referred to as the Copper Age. The devotees of alchemy associate copper with Venus, the symbol of femininity. The first mirrors were even made from copper. The Roman Empire was the largest producer of copper prior to the Industrial Age. Copper remains an extremely popular material.

Steel - stable and dependable

Mankind has acquired long years of practical experience with steel. Steel is a preferred material in engineering because of its durability, excellent corrosion properties and suitability for welding. It is significantly more stable than copper. The European steel registry lists more than 2,300 types of steel. Coal and steel served as the pillars of heavy industry over a long period of time and were thus the foundations of political power. Steel is defined as an iron-carbon alloy with less than 2.06 percent carbon content. Steel, or iron, has a density of 7.85-7.87 g/cm3. Steel melts at a temperature that can be as high as 1,536°C and therefore withstands much higher temperatures than copper.Steel was first produced around 1,000 B.C., much later than copper. In an ecological sense, steel is a sustainable material because it can be continuously reused with minimal quality loss .

Iron - from decoration to general utility

The use of iron was first recorded around 4,000 B.C. in Egypt. It was a solid iron used for decorations and for making spear tips. It was more suitable for these purposes than steel or copper. Smelted iron appeared later in Mesopotamia and Egypt, but it was only intended for ceremonial purposes. Perhaps iron came about as a byproduct of bronze production. After the Hethiter developed a method to produce iron, cultures became increasingly reliant on iron between 1,600 and 1,200 B.C. Iron is thought to be a major element of the earth's core, along with nickel. Iron is produced by reducing iron ore through a chemical reaction with carbon. In contrast to steel or copper, iron is produced in blast furnaces.

Materials Sciences

Materials management deals with the research, development, manufacturing and processing of raw and industrial materials. Key aspects here are biological and medical issues, which play an increasingly important role in this field.

innovations-report offers in-depth articles related to the development and application of materials and the structure and properties of new materials.

Latest News:

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An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets

The leaves of the lotus flower, and other natural surfaces that repel water and dirt, have been the model for many types of engineered liquid-repelling surfaces. As slippery as these surfaces are, however, tiny water droplets still stick to them. Now, Penn State researchers have developed nano/micro-textured, highly slippery surfaces able to outperform these naturally inspired coatings, particularly when the water is a vapor or tiny droplets.

Enhancing the mobility of liquid droplets on rough surfaces could improve condensation heat transfer for power-plant heat exchangers, create more efficient...

01.09.2015 | nachricht Read more

New material science research may advance tech tools

Hard, complex materials with many components are used to fabricate some of today's most advanced technology tools. However, little is still known about how the properties of these materials change under specific temperatures, magnetic fields and pressures.

Researchers from LSU, Fudan University, the University of Florida and the Collaborative Innovation Center of Advanced Microstructures in Nanjing, China,...

01.09.2015 | nachricht Read more

Single-Crystal Phosphors Suitable for Ultra-Bright, High-Power White Light Sources

Researchers in Japan successfully developed single-crystal phosphors that use a blue LD (laser diode) as an excitation light source, are suitable for ultra-bright, high-power white lighting, and have outstanding temperature characteristics.

The Optical Single Crystals Group at National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) led by Group Leader Kiyoshi Shimamura and Senior Researcher E. Garcia...

31.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

Manchester Team Reveal New, Stable 2D Materials

Dozens of new two-dimensional materials similar to graphene are now available, thanks to research from University of Manchester scientists.

These 2D crystals are capable of delivering designer materials with revolutionary new properties.

31.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

New method developed for timely detection of impending material failure

International acclaim: doctoral candidate at the University of Siegen develops new method for detecting impact damage more quickly and more accurately.

It's hailing and a small crack develops in the windscreen; it first goes unnoticed and eventually turns into a problem. This type of scenario, which usually...

28.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

Soaking up carbon dioxide and turning it into valuable products

Berkeley Lab researchers double down on a good thing by incorporating catalysts into crystalline sponges

A molecular system that holds great promise for the capture and storage of carbon dioxide has been modified so that it now also holds great promise as a...

28.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

Southampton scientists find new way to detect ortho-para conversion in water

New research by scientists from the University of Southampton has found that water molecules react differently to electric fields, which could provide a new way to study spin isomers at the single-molecule level.

Water molecules exist in two forms or 'isomers', ortho and para, that have different nuclear spin states. In ortho-water, the nuclear spins are parallel to one...

26.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

These microscopic fish are 3-D-printed to do more than swim

Researchers demonstrate a novel method to build microscopic robots with complex shapes and functionalities

Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego used an innovative 3D printing technology they developed to manufacture multipurpose fish-shaped...

26.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

Meteorite Impacts Can Create DNA Building Blocks

A new study shown that meteorite impacts on ancient oceans may have created nucleobases and amino acids.

A new study shown that meteorite impacts on ancient oceans may have created nucleobases and amino acids. Researchers from Tohoku University, National Institute...

24.08.2015 | nachricht Read more

Inspired by venus flytrap, researchers develop folding 'snap' geometry

UMass Amherst researchers develop a way to use curved creases to give thin curved shells a fast, programmable snapping motion

Inspired by natural "snapping" systems like Venus flytrap leaves and hummingbird beaks, a team led by physicist Christian Santangelo at the University of...

24.08.2015 | nachricht Read more
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: How wind sculpted Earth's largest dust deposit

China's Loess Plateau was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million years, according to a new report from University of Arizona geoscientists. The study is the first to explain how the steep-fronted plateau formed.

China's Loess Plateau was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million years, according to a new report from...

Im Focus: An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets

The leaves of the lotus flower, and other natural surfaces that repel water and dirt, have been the model for many types of engineered liquid-repelling surfaces. As slippery as these surfaces are, however, tiny water droplets still stick to them. Now, Penn State researchers have developed nano/micro-textured, highly slippery surfaces able to outperform these naturally inspired coatings, particularly when the water is a vapor or tiny droplets.

Enhancing the mobility of liquid droplets on rough surfaces could improve condensation heat transfer for power-plant heat exchangers, create more efficient...

Im Focus: Increasingly severe disturbances weaken world's temperate forests

Longer, more severe, and hotter droughts and a myriad of other threats, including diseases and more extensive and severe wildfires, are threatening to transform some of the world's temperate forests, a new study published in Science has found. Without informed management, some forests could convert to shrublands or grasslands within the coming decades.

"While we have been trying to manage for resilience of 20th century conditions, we realize now that we must prepare for transformations and attempt to ease...

Im Focus: OU astrophysicist and collaborators find supermassive black holes in quasar nearest Earth

A University of Oklahoma astrophysicist and his Chinese collaborator have found two supermassive black holes in Markarian 231, the nearest quasar to Earth, using observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

The discovery of two supermassive black holes--one larger one and a second, smaller one--are evidence of a binary black hole and suggests that supermassive...

Im Focus: What would a tsunami in the Mediterranean look like?

A team of European researchers have developed a model to simulate the impact of tsunamis generated by earthquakes and applied it to the Eastern Mediterranean. The results show how tsunami waves could hit and inundate coastal areas in southern Italy and Greece. The study is published today (27 August) in Ocean Science, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).

Though not as frequent as in the Pacific and Indian oceans, tsunamis also occur in the Mediterranean, mainly due to earthquakes generated when the African...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

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