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Super-hard metal 'four times tougher than titanium'

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posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:03 PM
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A super-hard metal has been made in the laboratory by melting together titanium and gold.

The alloy is the hardest known metallic substance compatible with living tissues, say US physicists.

The material is four times harder than pure titanium and has applications in making longer-lasting medical implants, they say.

Conventional knee and hip implants have to be replaced after about 10 years due to wear and tear.


Source

The uses of this alloy are many and varied. They couldn't even grind it with a diamonds.


The search for new hard materials is often challenging, but strongly motivated by the vast application potential such materials hold. Ti3Au exhibits high hardness values (about four times those of pure Ti and most steel alloys), reduced coefficient of friction and wear rates, and biocompatibility, all of which are optimal traits for orthopedic, dental, and prosthetic applications. In addition, the ability of this compound to adhere to ceramic parts can reduce both the weight and the cost of medical components. The fourfold increase in the hardness of Ti3Au compared to other Ti–Au alloys and compounds can be attributed to the elevated valence electron density, the reduced bond length, and the pseudogap formation. Understanding the origin of hardness in this intermetallic compound provides an avenue toward designing superior biocompatible, hard materials.


Technical Science Stuff

Pretty amazing stuff.

edit on 24-7-2016 by thesungod because: l not k




posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:09 PM
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Funny, but I thought by now all the combinations would have been tried.

Just goes to show there's always room for innovation.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:18 PM
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a reply to: SprocketUK

As always, the future will discover new things ...... the cycle will never cease. I'm pretty sure that way back after the Industrial Revolution they also thought ....... "everything has been invented now"

Yay to science, keep it up



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:19 PM
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Hardness and toughness are not the same thing... Diamonds are hard, but they sure aren't tough.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:28 PM
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I might be wrong and I'd like a metallurgist to tell me but melting the hardest metal with one of the worlds softest metals would not make the resulting alloy a lot harder that the original hard metal.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:31 PM
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originally posted by: GetHyped
Hardness and toughness are not the same thing... Diamonds are hard, but they sure aren't tough.


Also depends what the application is, do you want hardness? toughness? flexibility, shear resistance, tensile strength etc. However, a new option gives a 2nd choice, and possibly a better choice
edit on 2016-07-24T14:32:23-05:002016Sun, 24 Jul 2016 14:32:23 -0500bSunday3207America/Chicago162 by corblimeyguvnor because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:32 PM
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a reply to: GetHyped

Agreed, but...


One may argue further that the presence of small amounts of minority phases α-Ti3Au and α-Ti may favorably interact with β-Ti3Au to further inhibit dislocation formation and dislocation motion, thus increasing the hardness and toughness of the majority phase β-Ti3Au.



A full theoretical understanding of hardness remains challenging because of the inherently complex relationship between elasticity and toughness that defines hardness (58). In alloys, in particular, hardness mostly depends on the underlying crystal structure, atomic bonding, and microstructure (23), making the structural analysis of paramount importance (59, 60). Powder x-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis (Fig. 2C) reveals that Ti0.75Au0.25 consists of a majority phase β-Ti3Au (Embedded Image; Fig. 2B) (57) along with minute amounts of α-Ti3Au (Embedded Image; Fig. 2A) (less than 0.6%) (57) and α-Ti (less than 4%). The majority phase β-Ti3Au has a lattice constant a ~5.1 Å, whereas the minority phase β-Ti3Au has a smaller lattice constant a ~4.1 Å (31). Because the formation energy of a Burgers vector (a vector denoting the magnitude and direction of the lattice distortion resulting from a dislocation) is proportional to the unit cell parameter, the compound with the larger unit cell parameter β-Ti3Au is expected to have a higher hardness.


Should read the technical acience stuff link.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:33 PM
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originally posted by: thesungod
a reply to: GetHyped

Agreed, but...


One may argue further that the presence of small amounts of minority phases α-Ti3Au and α-Ti may favorably interact with β-Ti3Au to further inhibit dislocation formation and dislocation motion, thus increasing the hardness and toughness of the majority phase β-Ti3Au.



A full theoretical understanding of hardness remains challenging because of the inherently complex relationship between elasticity and toughness that defines hardness (58). In alloys, in particular, hardness mostly depends on the underlying crystal structure, atomic bonding, and microstructure (23), making the structural analysis of paramount importance (59, 60). Powder x-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis (Fig. 2C) reveals that Ti0.75Au0.25 consists of a majority phase β-Ti3Au (Embedded Image; Fig. 2B) (57) along with minute amounts of α-Ti3Au (Embedded Image; Fig. 2A) (less than 0.6%) (57) and α-Ti (less than 4%). The majority phase β-Ti3Au has a lattice constant a ~5.1 Å, whereas the minority phase β-Ti3Au has a smaller lattice constant a ~4.1 Å (31). Because the formation energy of a Burgers vector (a vector denoting the magnitude and direction of the lattice distortion resulting from a dislocation) is proportional to the unit cell parameter, the compound with the larger unit cell parameter β-Ti3Au is expected to have a higher hardness.


Should read the technical acience stuff link.


Is that RoHs compliant LOL?
edit on 2016-07-24T14:35:02-05:002016Sun, 24 Jul 2016 14:35:02 -0500bSunday3507America/Chicago162 by corblimeyguvnor because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:39 PM
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a reply to: crayzeed

Not all aloys are simply metals melted together. A good example in this case is steel. Iron and carbon alloyed together.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:41 PM
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a reply to: corblimeyguvnor

I'm guessing yes, since they are really looking at this for medical applications. That said I am speculating.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 02:44 PM
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Gold applications, more than just monetary, right!



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 03:02 PM
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a reply to: Substracto

Yep. A lot of gold used in the space industry as well. I'm curious if this alloy will have any uses in that field.
edit on 24-7-2016 by thesungod because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 04:15 PM
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Pretty cool thanks for sharing OP, going to look into into it more.

Could it be used along side Graphene? as it's 200+ times stronger than steel and can be used on many levels/application's.
edit on 24-7-2016 by DarkvsLight29 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 04:32 PM
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Gold and titanium having medical applications...thank god we are all rich hey. Might aswell throw in some saffron to make it even harder.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 04:33 PM
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a reply to: DarkvsLight29

An interesting question. I don't if graphene adheres to metals.


On the other hand, a graphene coating can be applied to the surface simply by dipping the surface into a solution containing a very small amount of graphene. The graphene was found to adhere strongly to the surface during the testing. It is interesting to see that even partial coatings are very effective at reducing friction because of the ability of the graphene to reorient itself during initial wear cycles, and can last a considerable length of time providing a low friction during sliding. Additionally, they do not produce any waste.


Source

It can in fact after a quick google.

My beef with graphene is this though. It's really not as tough as we all thought.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 05:04 PM
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originally posted by: thesungod
a reply to: DarkvsLight29

An interesting question. I don't if graphene adheres to metals.


On the other hand, a graphene coating can be applied to the surface simply by dipping the surface into a solution containing a very small amount of graphene. The graphene was found to adhere strongly to the surface during the testing. It is interesting to see that even partial coatings are very effective at reducing friction because of the ability of the graphene to reorient itself during initial wear cycles, and can last a considerable length of time providing a low friction during sliding. Additionally, they do not produce any waste.


Source

It can in fact after a quick google.

My beef with graphene is this though. It's really not as tough as we all thought.


You make a good point on it not being as though as first thought, reading your bottom link it seems only perfect Graphene is super strong the rest is not so good, when made perfect i want a iron man style suit lol.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 06:04 PM
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Ancient cultures always put a lot of attention in gold and honey, honey is said to have a lot of medical applications as well, very interesting.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 06:06 PM
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So ...it would be like a ...molecular Damascus of the two?
SOMEONE cue me in.



posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 06:20 PM
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The wear surfaces in the replacement joints aren't metal against metal are they??




posted on Jul, 24 2016 @ 06:30 PM
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a reply to: mikell

In some cases, yes.

Source



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