A group of researchers has created a new metal form called “the strongest silver in the world.” The new silver is 42% stronger than the previous record, but this is not the basic property of this material, as researchers suggest in the press release.
What they have discovered is a new mechanism that is used in the nanometer range to produce metals that are much more resistant and solid than any other material ever produced before, without sacrificing electrical conductivity. Frederic Sansoz, materials scientist and professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Vermont, published his study with colleagues from the field of natural materials.
The researchers used small amounts of copper, which they mixed with silver to control the behavior of the latter defects, and exploited the same defects to their advantage. In the end, they created a “nanocrystalline nanogelled metal” with “unprecedented mechanical and physical properties.”
The same research team believes that the same method can be applied to several other metals to create a new class of materials that “is only now beginning to understand how they work,” as Sansoz himself points out.
Background info and sources:
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