A Korean research team has successfully developed a technique to produce a new type of steel that is 50 percent stronger, better processed, and much lighter than conventional steel used to make cars. A research team consisting of professors Kim Nak-joon and Kim Han-soo from Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) announced on Feb. 4 that they have succeeded in developing a technique to make strong, light, and flexible steel, which is second only to titanium. It was done so by adding aluminum to iron and controlling the crystal structure formed.
So far, many studies have been conducted in the global auto industry to lower the weight and augment the strength of steel by alloying it with aluminum in order to increase mileage. However, an increase in the amount of aluminum weakens the structural strength of the resulting alloy, and it shears easily rather than bend. To address the problem, the research team was able to develop a technique that enabled them to make an alloy with a small enough amount of aluminum that it did not break easily. They were also able to evenly distribute the aluminum throughout the structure of the alloy using the method.
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