Using alloys made from different metals, including zirconium, nickel, titanium, and copper, a team of Yale researchers has created metallic materials that can be blowmolded like plastics into complex shapes. Jan Schroers, a materials scientist at Yale University said the material, called bulk metallic glasses (BMGs)-metal alloys, allows shapes that can't be achieved using regular metals, but do so without sacrificing metal's strength. The team's findings are posted in the journal, Materials Today, as well as in The Yale Daily Bulletin.
The BMGs have randomly arranged atoms as opposed to the orderly, crystalline structure found in ordinary metals, according to Schroers, and they've been blowmolded into a number of complex shapes, including seamless metallic bottles, watch cases, miniature resonators, and biomedical implants. The researchers say the material can be molded in less than a minute and is twice as strong as typical steel....