Material Selection

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Mavrisa
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Material Selection

Postby Mavrisa » Sat Jul 27, 2013 1:29 am UTC

Hi, I was wondering if anyone knew of a database or some software that would help me to find a material for a specific application I'm looking into. I need information like conductivity, density, melting point, cost, etc.

Thank you!
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WibblyWobbly
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Re: Material Selection

Postby WibblyWobbly » Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:31 am UTC

Are you hesitant to suggest specific classes of material or general fields of application? I would think most databases that would contain all of the sort of information you're looking for will be specialized to certain fields. Even very general classes of material might help. I can think of probably a couple of books or databases for polymeric materials alone. For a general reference that might have a wide scope (but perhaps a more shallow depth than you'd prefer), I might suggest the CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics; lots of info, especially on thermodynamic properties, melting/boiling points, densities, crystal structure, etc.

Mavrisa
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Re: Material Selection

Postby Mavrisa » Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:57 am UTC

Yeah I suppose that would help, wouldn't it...
I need the material to be a conductor (actual conductivity shouldn't matter too much), relatively cheap, low density, not violently reactive with water, and a melting point between roughly 200C and 500C. To me it sounds like a metal or alloy would fit the bill, but I wouldn't want to rule out anything (e.g. Though TiN wouldn't work because of its density and melting point, this is the kind of thing I wouldn't want to rule out - it's still decently conductive and nonreactive with water.)
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WibblyWobbly
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Re: Material Selection

Postby WibblyWobbly » Sat Jul 27, 2013 3:15 am UTC

Mavrisa wrote:Yeah I suppose that would help, wouldn't it...
I need the material to be a conductor (actual conductivity shouldn't matter too much), relatively cheap, low density, not violently reactive with water, and a melting point between roughly 200C and 500C. To me it sounds like a metal or alloy would fit the bill, but I wouldn't want to rule out anything (e.g. Though TiN wouldn't work because of its density and melting point, this is the kind of thing I wouldn't want to rule out - it's still decently conductive and nonreactive with water.)

That's more outside my wheelhouse, but it looks like Indium/Silver alloys might have some of the properties you're looking for. Lower density than pure copper, gold or silver, has higher resistivity/lower conductivity than pure copper, gold or silver, but not terribly far off, IMO. Shouldn't react significantly with water, but the melting point may be a little too low. Unfortunately, for a general reference, I'm not sure. Sorry. :(

Edit: a slightly stranger thought - have you considered conductive polymers? Doped poly(3-hexylthiophene) has a fairly long history as a good conductor (groomed for use in organic photovoltaics, but the conversion efficiency isn't good enough ... yet), has significantly lower density than you're likely to find in metals or alloys, doesn't react explosively with water (but water inclusion may erode efficiency, although oxygen is worse), and I believe high-MW P3HT has a melting point in the low to mid 200 degrees C.

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idobox
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Re: Material Selection

Postby idobox » Sat Jul 27, 2013 11:47 am UTC

Zinc is a good candidate for you.
There are also alloys of aluminium and magnesium that could fit your needs.
Zamac is a very common one
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zamak
, but there are many alloys used for die-casting that could fit you (die-casting is done at relatively low temperatures)
http://www.paceind.com/die-casting-101/about_alloys
this guys sell alloys, but sadly use imperial units.
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johnny_7713
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Re: Material Selection

Postby johnny_7713 » Sat Jul 27, 2013 6:44 pm UTC

I really like www.matweb.com. Has a whole bunch of data on lots of different materials.

billy joule
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Re: Material Selection

Postby billy joule » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:05 am UTC

Mavrisa wrote:Yeah I suppose that would help, wouldn't it...
I need the material to be a conductor (actual conductivity shouldn't matter too much), relatively cheap, low density, not violently reactive with water, and a melting point between roughly 200C and 500C.


grantadesign CES selector (I'm a new member so can't post a link) is the software that is used at my University for materials selection:

It's very easy to use, It would take less than 5minutes to graph (for example) conductivity vs cost/kg for all materials with MP between X and Y, corrosion resistance in fresh water of Z, density < Q.

The lecturer took ages to get licensed copies burnt for the class, IIRC many of my classmates 'obtained' the software elsewhere in the meantime..So seek and you may find.


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