The way we live and the way we work is made possible through metals. Buildings, Cars, airplanes, electronics, medical devices, jewelry, and even medicines are made from metals. And the integrity and quality of those metals can influence the final product. This blog has covered many of these metal subjects. If you are involved with metals and analysis, you might have found an article that inspired you to think big. In case you missed any, here are our top viewed articles that we published this year.
1. Metal Strength and Stiffness: What’s the Difference?
A material can have high strength and low stiffness. If a metal cracks easily, it has low strength, but if it has low stiffness, it can deflect a high load.The steel industry is one of the largest in the world and is integral to numerous adjacent industries such as construction, transportation, energy, and manufacturing. Steel is widely-used for its strength, but it must also meet certain requirements for stiffness, depending on the end product it is used to make. Learn more about the differences.
2. Catalytic Converter Theft: Does This Crime Pay?
Every year our articles about the precious metals in catalytic converters seem to come out on top. This year is no exception. Catalytic converters are pollution control devices coated with chemicals and a combination of platinum (Pt), rhodium (Rh) or palladium (Pd). Catalytic converter recycling plays a significant part in the effort to feed the constant demand for platinum from the automotive and other transportation industries that make these devices.This article explains why there is catalytic converter theft and lists some ways to prevent it.
3. Do You Really Need to Calibrate Your XRF Analyzer Annually?
Calibration is the process where you confirm that your measurements are true by measuring against a standard. Calibration is usually done on the instrument before it gets shipped out the manufacturer’s door. And although portable XRF analyzers are usually quite rugged, especially since they are sometimes used in harsh environments, equipment degrades over time and should be recalibrated periodically.
4. Why Scrap Metal Recyclers Need to Know Their Steels
Steel scrap, an essential raw material in making new steel, is usually mixed with other materials. Accurately ID’ing the type of steel is especially important to the amount of money a scrap yard will pay for incoming metals, and charge for its inventory. It’s also important to the finished product. Learn about best practices for sorting metals and alloys.
5. What Happens to the Gold After the Old Jewelry is Cashed In?
Because the pieces are usually outdated or broken, pawn shops and jewelry stores usually send all that ‘scrap gold’ to a gold recycler, or refiner, who melts it all down. Learn about the different ways the scrap is analyzed, tested, and assessed for purity and what kinds of other metals could be found in what you thought was pure gold jewelry.
6. New Research on 3D Printing with Titanium
The rise of additive manufacturing, or 3D printing as it’s commonly known, is only increasing the use of this versatile metal. 3D printing with metal was once cost-prohibitive, but now 3D printing technologies for metal may be more efficient than some traditional manufacturing methods and produce a comparable, or even better product, depending on the application.
7. Are Your Safety Valves Safe?
Efforts to address the flow-accelerated corrosion, or FAC issue, in oil and gas operations and nuclear and fossil-fuel power plants has put the focus on analyzing pipes and valves. FAC occurs when carbon steel piping and components are degraded by flowing water or steam water with low-dissolved oxygen — which could cause thinning of the walls of piping over time and rupturing. Learn about the technology that is helping to keep operations safe.
8. How To Gain Better Control of Your Hot Strip Mill Operations
Hot rolling is widely considered the most critical step to make uniform sheet metal of specific thickness, depending on the end use. Stereoscopic x-ray profile gauges have the ability to determine both the cross-thickness profile and the physical position of the strip in space. Learn more about this technology.
9. SEM/EDS Analysis Verifies Difficult Magnet Materials for the Automotive Industry
Typical automobiles today use a large number of permanent magnets in motors and sensors throughout a car. For the most part, these magnets are comprised of Neodymium (Nd), Iron (Fe) and Boron (B). However, additions of small amounts of other elements change the magnetic properties of the material as well as its corrosion properties, and in certain cases improve utility at higher temperatures.Learn about the multiple techniques for analysis.
10. Bad Krugerrands: a Concern to Pawn and Numismatics Operations
Pawnbrokers and numismatic dealers are encountering problems with customers trying to get cash for fake gold, counterfeit coins and bad Krugerrands. To help combat against the widespread fraud, here are several tips on testing the authenticity of Krugerrands and other metal currency, with XRF technology, magnets, and ultrasound, as well as your hearing, eyesight, and knowledge.
Accelerating Science was designed to provide informative, thoughtful, and interesting stories about the scientific discoveries that fill the space between scientific journal articles and general news pieces. Comment below and let us know if there are any subjects you would like to see written about in the coming year.