Materials in Production Features

Production features about how to manufacture multiple materials together and the latest production processes. This section includes manufacturing methods of both traditional and exotic materials.

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Silverstone hosts latest innovations

The co-located FAST and Engineering Materials Live exhibitions gave visitors a range of valuable insights.  Read More


Will Ford's composites move finally crack the automotive industry's throughput dilemma?

Carbon fibre is making a slow but seemingly inevitable move into the automotive industry. But can engineers crack the throughput difficulties that have dogged uptake? James Bakewell reports.  Read More


Getting the right balance between innovation and commercialisation

Maintaining a creative culture whilst ensuring commercial success is an ongoing dilemma for many engineering and materials firms. So how can inventions be used more effectively to exploit commercial advantage and open up new opportunities?  Read More


UK vies to become carbon fibre hub as supply chain initiative begins

As Europe's automotive industry grapples to lightweight structures and meet impending emission regulations, manufacturers are still reluctant to use carbon fibre composites. So, can a recent UK project bridge the divide? James Bakewell finds out.  Read More


Shaping Lives – The Impact of 3D Printing Within the Healthcare Industry

The medical industry is a field in which innovation and new technologies have a direct impact on improving processes, operation results and saving lives. Stratasys’ additive manufacturing technology is a key enabler to this.  Read More


3D printing meta-materials: combining multi-materials at the print head to produce almost any properties

Combining different polymers in different combinations per layer of 3D printed material, is leading to the development of an entirely new palette of materials. Justin Cunningham reports.  Read More


Two hypercar designers that choose metal over composites

While many automotive manufacturers are looking at composites and aluminium to lightweight, two supercar designers are turning to nature to find fresh innovation in metals. Engineering Materials finds out more.  Read More


Airbus 3D print a plane as flying testbed

As industries push the boundaries of additive manufacturing, an Airbus engineer wanted to answer the ultimate question, ‘can you 3D print an entire aircraft?’  Read More


Metal manipulation

As aluminium becomes the lightweight material of choice for many, we look at one project that aims to secure supply, reduce production emissions and keep value in scrap. Justin Cunningham finds out more about JLR’s REALCAR project.  Read More


The testing and analysis of wind turbine blades

We talk to an engineer whose day job it is to bend and even break goliath wind turbine blades, and find out what can be learnt as the materials are put through their paces. Justin Cunningham reports.  Read More


Single part foam sealant helps produce a better gasket

It might not have the glamour of carbon fibre, but effective seals and gaskets play a vital role in product reliability and longevity. Yet, like mechanical fasteners, specifying them is often done with little thought. Gaskets and seals are not typically associated with innovation, with the default often being whatever was used last time.  Read More


Graphene: What does the future hold outside of the lab?

The 2010 Nobel Prize catapulted Graphene onto the world stage, and it's since captured the attention of the materials world. No doubt there are extraordinary opportunities.  Read More


Top 14 materials for 2014

Advanced materials will play a key role in solving tomorrow's technological challenges and societal issues. Here, Engineering Materials looks at 14 of the most promising developments to look out for in 2014.  Read More


Testing techniques to analyse and control surface properties of materials

There are numerous techniques for manipulating the surface properties of a material. Heat treatment, anodising, shot blasting, peening, plating, painting; the list goes on.   Read More


Materials inspired by nature

From imitating the exceptional toughness of Mother of Pearl to the way geckos stick to walls, the burgeoning field of biomimicry is inspiring the design of new, leading edge engineering materials. Laura Hopperton reports.  Read More


Beyond the obvious

Metal matrix composites are often overshadowed by carbon fibre composites. However, the materials have distinct advantages that should not be overlooked. Justin Cunningham investigates.   Read More


Superforming Aluminium including cavity, bubble, back-pressure and diaphragm forming

The process of heating a sheet of plastic, draping it over a mould and sucking the air out has been in use for some time.  Read More


Lightweight panels prove flexible

The imperative to drive down vehicle weight (and thereby carbon emissions) has been a key goal, particularly within the transportation sector, for many years. The reasons for this are obvious enough, since legislation, environmental concerns, economics and common sense all demand lower carbon usage and, while alterations to engine technologies can achieve lower energy consumption, those alterations are extremely expensive to develop. Much cheaper and easier, therefore, to reduce weight from the vehicle's body.  Read More


Advanced Engineering Show 2011: Adressing material shortcomings

The Advanced Engineering show held at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) served up a host of innovative materials for engineers to assess and critique. The sheer number of materials available on the market has never been more varied. But there is no perfect material and it is up to engineers to find the best fit for the product or application at hand.  Read More


Non-traditional bearings improve design and functionality in many industries

Bearing manufacturers are increasingly looking to develop and use alternative materials for a variety of different applications. It is being driven by both the demand from engineers for better solutions as well as the result of a concerted effort by industry to open up and engage with new market sectors.  Read More


The ceramic dynamic

Could plasma spraying technology offer the ability to manufacture high-strength, lightweight, pure ceramic components? Eureka reports.  Read More


Expanding properties

Plastic materials that can expand on contact with water are finding increasing applications in industry. Justin Cunningham reports.  Read More


Cover story: Making a material difference

In advance of the opening of the National Composites Centre in Bristol this year, Paul Fanning finds out what this facility could mean for UK industry.  Read More


Cover story: Making the sustainable material choice

Tom Shelley looks at some of the challenges and questions faced by designers when choosing sustainable materials.  Read More


Metals work with composites for aerospace

Tom Shelley reports on why both metals and composites are crucial in aerospace constructions.   Read More

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