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Subject: Metallic glass stronger than steel
Das Kardinal    1/17/2011 3:09:04 AM
Source : http://www.technologyreview.com/computing/27046/page1/ Excerpt : In the world of materials, strength (the amount of force a substance can withstand) and toughness (its capacity to resist fracturing) are not merely different attributes; they're very difficult to achieve together. Now a collaboration of researchers from Caltech and the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has created a form of glass that has both qualities. It's stronger and tougher than steel or, indeed, any other known material. The material features palladium, a metal whose possible use in glasses was recognized 45 years ago. "It's probably the best damage-tolerant material we've seen," says Robert Ritchie, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, who tested the new material. He says no one has ever achieved such toughness from 100 percent glass and that the potential exists to mass-produce the glass. -------- If they manage to reduce the cost and mass produce it, it's not difficult to predict the stuff's going to end up in tank armors (if that's not already the case).
 
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Das Kardinal       1/17/2011 3:10:33 AM
And sorry for the double posting. I saw an error message when I first clicked "post message"... and then checked by reloading the thread list. 
 
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doggtag       1/17/2011 6:17:33 AM
--------
If they manage to reduce the cost and mass produce it, it's not difficult to predict the stuff's going to end up in tank armors (if that's not already the case).

One of the things that always raises concerns over these materials is its brittleness and overall structural integrity over a wide temperature range.
What works well enough under temperate conditions in, saying, near-sub-freezing point (~32 F, 0 C) and up to ~120 F,
may not work as well as temperatures reach further extremes: militaries have seen themselves fighting in extremes of well-below-0 F (northern Europe) and into the near-130's F in places such as the Middle East.
 
This has been a similar concern in plastics and ceramics alloys: there comes a point where brittleness at extreme cold temps, and plasticity (softening) at extreme higher temps (vehicles setting under the Iraq sun at the height of summer can have surface temperatures exceeding 150 F),
  has made the adoption of these materials less-desirable than metal alloys.
 
We seen these concerns everywhere from small arms (foregrips and buttstock materials, and the US expirements in developing composite-cased ammo thru the LSAT program and others)
 to ground- and air- vehicles (tires and other uses of various rubber, laminated plastics/composites, and certainly a handful of others).
 
What works well at one extreme end, may have properties that make it far less than desirable at the other end.
 
 
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