20 October 2015

Boeing invented a new material from nickel

American corporation Boeing has created a new material from nickel . The invention received the name Microlattice. The novelty feature is the material is hollow at 99.99%. The structure of Microlattice is similar to the structure of bones. The outer shell has sufficient hardness, inside the bones are hollow. The new material represents a system of connected hollow tubes. The wall of one tube is thinner than a human hair 1000 times. HRL Laboratories is working on the material creation with the corporation. Sophia Young, representative of HRL Laboratories, considered the possibilities of using Microlattice. One of the application sectors is the aerospace industry.

Nickel metal has high strength and lightness. An airplane made of such a metal is better able to save fuel. It's not about the fuselage, completely made in this way. But it is really possible to make from it seat frames, floors and other elements.

This is a good solution for Boeing's task of reducing titanium volumes. Specialists of the concern have long sought replacement of the metal used for the construction of Dreamliner. In August, research was conducted on alternative materials. There were not too many options. It was about aluminum or carbon fibers. The minus of these materials is the limitations in use. Aluminum wins in titanium in terms of value . But loses when comparing strength. In addition, when it comes into contact with carbon fiber, it is susceptible to corrosion. Usually these materials are not used in a binder.

A number of tests were carried out. When designing the window frame Dreamliner in the cockpit, the titanium was replaced with aluminum . Some doors were made of composite materials. As a result, a conclusion was made about the possibility of replacement. If the construction does not need high strength and rigidity, aluminum can be used. I wonder if Microlattice is suitable for the same purposes?

In the rest, Boeing traditionally uses titanium . In August, the American corporation entered into another agreement with the Russian Avisma. Titanium stampings were negotiated. The sphere of application is the composite wing of the 777X aircraft. Production of the model is scheduled for 2017. The new model includes a new engine, a new composite wing. Plus, the technologies used for the 787 Dreamliner are involved. The first delivery will be made in 2020.

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