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Current issue

ELEKTRO 5/2018 was released on May 16th 2018. Its digital version will be available on June 6th 2018.

Topic: Lightning and overvoltage protection; EFS, EPS; ELO SYS 2018

Main Article
Energy router and its role in smart grids
Smart Cities (part 2 – volume 1)

Making lighter vehicles with magnesium alloys

26.01.2018 | EPFL | actu.epfl.ch

EPFL researchers have developed models of magnesium alloys to understand how to make the metal more pliable. Magnesium is the lightest metal on earth but cannot easily be shaped into usable forms. The researchers hope that with the models will lead to the discovery of new, more malleable alloys, so that carmakers can make lighter vehicles that consume less energy.

Making lighter machines and equipment is a goal of manufacturers in industries ranging from automotive to aerospace. And the key could just be magnesium – a metal that is not only four times lighter than steel, but is also easy to find. The catch is that pure magnesium is hard to stretch and form and so cannot be used as-is.

Making cars lighter

So, researchers at EPFL’s Laboratory for Multiscale Mechanics Modelling developed a model to predict how the metal behaves when mixed with different elements in order to determine which type of alloy provides the deformation capacity needed for industrial applications. Their research was published today in Science.

For now the alloys are still in the modelling stage. The next step will be fabrication in the lab to see if they have the right properties for industrial use and can be manufactured on a large scale.

Read more at EPFL

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