Types of Metal Alloys

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Types of Metal Alloys

Metal alloys are materials composed of two or more metallic elements. Metal alloys can be classified into several categories.

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Ferrous alloys

  • Ferrous alloys contain iron as the primary constituent.
  • The most common ferrous alloy is steel.
    • Steel is composed of iron and carbon.
  • Stainless steel is another widely used ferrous alloy.
    • Stainless steel incorporates chromium, nickel, and other elements.
    • Stainless steel improves the resistance to corrosion.
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Non-ferrous alloys

  • Non-ferrous alloys do not contain iron as the primary constituent.
  • Non-ferrous alloys include aluminium alloys, copper alloys, titanium alloys, and nickel alloys.
    • Copper alloys include brass and bronze.
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Precious metal alloys

  • Precious metal alloys include metals like gold, silver, and platinum.
  • Precious metal alloys are used in jewellery-making, electronics, and dental applications.
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Shape memory alloys

  • Shape memory alloys (SMAs) exhibit unique properties, such as:
    • The ability to recover their original shape.
    • High strength.
    • Excellent corrosion resistance.
  • SMAs include a nickel-titanium alloy called nitinol.
  • SMAs are used in medical devices, aerospace, and robotics.
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  • Superalloys are high-performance alloys.
    • Superalloys are designed for conditions of extreme temperature and stress.
  • Superalloys are used in aerospace engines and gas turbines.
  • Nickel-based superalloys are used most commonly.
    • This is because of their exceptional heat resistance and mechanical strength.

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7Designing & Making Principles

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