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Basics of Metal Matrix Composites

Abstract

Metal composite materials have found applications in many areas of the daily life for quite some time. Often it is not realized that the application makes use of composite materials. These materials are produced in-situ from the conventional production and processing of metals. Here, the Dalmatian sword with its meander structure can be mentioned, which results from welding of two types of steel by repeated forging. Materials like cast iron with graphite or material steel with a high carbide content as well as tungsten carbides, consisting of carbides and metallic binders, belong to this group, too. For many researchers the term metal matrix composites is often equated with the term light metal matrix composites (MMC’s). Substantial progress with the development of light metal matrix composites has been achieved in recent decades, so that they could be introduced to the most important applications. In traffic engineering, especially in the automotive industry, the commercial use of MMC’s has been used in fibre reinforced pistons and aluminium crank cases with strengthened cylinder surfaces as well as particle-strengthened brake disks.
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