As strong as titanium – but much cheaper

Brittle intermetallic compound makes ultrastrong low-density steel with large ductility

Scientists at the Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea have published a study in which a new alloy that is described as strong and light as titanium , but costs only one-tenth.

The alloy, as described in a study published in Nature, is composed of iron and aluminum, to which nickel has been added as an additional ingredient . This creates a so-called intermettalic B2, in which the metallic nickel reacts with aluminum and at the nanoscale B2-crystals are formed. These crystals would make the alloy much less brittle and therefore extra strong, while due to the presence of aluminum of the material is still light.

According to Korean scientists is the new alloy as strong as titanium , while the weight is comparable . However, the material should cost, if produced on a large scale, a factor of ten lower than the relatively expensive titanium.

Originally published by Nature