What is Alloy: Definition and 97 Discussions

An alloy is an admixture of metals, or a metal combined with one or more other elements. For example, combining the metallic elements gold and copper produces red gold, gold and silver becomes white gold, and silver combined with copper produces sterling silver. Combining iron with non-metallic carbon or silicon produces alloys called steel or silicon steel. The resulting mixture forms a substance with properties that often differ from those of the pure metals, such as increased strength or hardness. Unlike other substances that may contain metallic bases but do not behave as metals, such as aluminium oxide (sapphire), beryllium aluminium silicate (emerald) or sodium chloride (salt), an alloy will retain all the properties of a metal in the resulting material, such as electrical conductivity, ductility, opacity, and luster. Alloys are used in a wide variety of applications, from the steel alloys, used in everything from buildings to automobiles to surgical tools, to exotic titanium alloys used in the aerospace industry, to beryllium-copper alloys for non-sparking tools. In some cases, a combination of metals may reduce the overall cost of the material while preserving important properties. In other cases, the combination of metals imparts synergistic properties to the constituent metal elements such as corrosion resistance or mechanical strength. Examples of alloys are steel, solder, brass, pewter, duralumin, bronze, and amalgams.
An alloy may be a solid solution of metal elements (a single phase, where all metallic grains (crystals) are of the same composition) or a mixture of metallic phases (two or more solutions, forming a microstructure of different crystals within the metal). Intermetallic compounds are alloys with a defined stoichiometry and crystal structure. Zintl phases are also sometimes considered alloys depending on bond types (see Van Arkel–Ketelaar triangle for information on classifying bonding in binary compounds).
Alloys are defined by a metallic bonding character. The alloy constituents are usually measured by mass percentage for practical applications, and in atomic fraction for basic science studies. Alloys are usually classified as substitutional or interstitial alloys, depending on the atomic arrangement that forms the alloy. They can be further classified as homogeneous (consisting of a single phase), or heterogeneous (consisting of two or more phases) or intermetallic.

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  1. Astronuc

    GRX-810, Advanced Multi-principal Element Alloy (MPEA)

    https://www.nasa.gov/image-feature/nasas-new-3d-printed-superalloy-can-take-the-heat I searched for the composition, which I found in an open access Nature article https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-023-05893-0 Ni bal, 33 Co, 29 Cr, 3 W, 1.5 Re, 0.75 Nb, 0.25 Ti, 0.3 Al, 0.05 C; Nb and Ti...
  2. Ozen

    Why Not Titanium Alloy Rocket Engine Nozzles?

    Industry standard right now is a copper alloy (usually an aluminum bronze) inner liner to promote heat transfer to the coolant channels and the walls of the channels and outer liner are usually made of an INCONEL alloy, usually either 625 or 718. But INCONEL is VERY expensive and heavy. The...
  3. M

    Finding the mass of two metals in an alloy

    I looked for solutions on the internet but all of them had given mass and looked for volume , but that isn't given here. I tried something like subtracting the two weights or trying to find mass from the weight but i can't find the correct awnser
  4. S

    Engineering Calculating the percent composition of weight of an alloy

    I found the density of carbon and iron: ρ_fe=7.87 g/〖cm〗^3 ρ_c=2.26 g/〖cm〗^3 Using equation 2: atom density of iron and carbon N_fe = 8.48e22 cm^-3 N_c = 1.13e23 cm^-3 Using equation 1: macroscopic scatter and absorption cross sections of iron and carbon Σ_a,fe = .217 cm^-1...
  5. M

    Chemical Composition of nickel alloy

    I ask the foundry to cast nickel alloys and I took a piece metal to do a chemical test. The element composition of the nickel alloy is Ni 70% Cr 12% Fe 1.2% Mo 2.5%...so far they all are in the allowable range. But I found the alloy also contains W 0.004% ! Is this the normal condition ? ? I...
  6. L

    Shape memory alloy spring

    Do you have any information's about how to calculate the bias spring or the Force needed ? the current necessary to heat the SMA spring for a 4mm stroke ? Thank you
  7. RRouse

    Electric Singing Saw - Spring Steel Alloy (Material Science)

    This is a fun one, sort of! I am working on a singing saw that can be amplified with a regular magnetic pick up, from an electric guitar. I made a blade from laser cut1095 blue tempered spring steel (0.042" thick). It sounded great, but after a few months of service, the blade cracked. What is a...
  8. K

    Is Zinc alloy or Aluminium alloy better?

    Which alloy is better resistant to corrosion and less easy to get scratched and the paint fall? For kitchen cupboard handle. Thanks a lot.
  9. M

    Titanium Nickel Alloy: Strength & Durability

    Also how bullet proof is it? I know it is a titanium nickel alloy so I’m guessing it may be strong with the titanium in it.
  10. Quentin_alex

    Discontinuous yielding in a low alloy steel

    What could prevent the discontinuous yield (upper and lower) points during a tensile test on a low alloy steel A706 grade? Thanks.
  11. Steve Crook

    Uncovering the Mystery of WGL's Cantaba Alloy

    I'm trying to learn more about this alloy and there is scant little on Google. William Godfrey Lecomber created a copper alloy for use in frictionless bearings and apparently huge amounts were sold to America and South Africa. WGL called the alloy Cantaba and named his farm in Ruthin (which he...
  12. MathematicalPhysicist

    Derivation of the energy of an alloy

    Homework Statement Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution My question is how to derive ##(4.13)## from the above preceding paragraphs?, I am not sure how achieve these terms.
  13. T

    Finding thermodynamic properties for a Zn-Mg Alloy

    Hi! I am using a Zn-Mg alloy (52% and 48% respectively) as a phase change material in a thermal energy storage system, but I have been unable to track down important properties, such as specific heats and thermal conductivity. Is there any way to approximate these relatively accurately given...
  14. jpandrew19

    Help determining phase diagram of Pb-Sb alloy

    Hello, I'm new to the forums and hope this is the correct area to post this question: I've Recently conducted a lab in class where we melted an alloy of Pb-Sb in order to determine its cooling curve. We did two different weight compositions (11.2% Sb) and (17.5% Sb) and recorded their...
  15. A

    A Diffusion of Hydrogen through Molybdenum alloy

    I have been preforming experiments to study the diffusion of Hydrogen through Molybdenum. According to Sievert's law diatomic molecules would diffuse as atoms. But according to my experiments I notice that the flux of hydrogen is directly proportional to the pressure of hydrogen and not to the...
  16. N

    Searching for Alloy: 3 Metals & Specific Properties

    Hello everyone I've got a youtube channel with the science behind games. And because of that, I'm in search for an alloy with the following properties: - It needs to be an alloy of at least three metals - At least one of them must have a greenish flame color, a bluish flame color, and a red...
  17. F

    I Material phase in Cu-Zr alloy

    Hi, I recently started studying materials science and I am looking at a particular alloy of Copper Zirconium. I have identified a B1 phase and they call it a CuZr phase, which I 'm finding rather confusing. Initially I thought that CuZr meant that each unit cell in the lattice was composed of...
  18. marcophys

    What lives in washing machines and eats aluminium alloy?

    The washing machine stopped spinning, so I dismantled it. Here's what I found: I'm thinking it might have become a big battery, as the steel drive shaft was embedded in the alloy drive bracket, which in turn had 6 studs bolting it to the stainless steel drum. It was all enclosed in the sealed...
  19. M

    Digestion of Pb-alloy for ICP-OES analysis

    Hello everybody, I am looking for a disgestion procedure of Pb-alloy, so that we can measure the elements with ICP-OES. Pb should be removed, that it doesn't contaminate the system. So far we used HCl for digestion, but the results weren't very good. Elements of interest are: Sn Sb Bi Cu Cd As...
  20. Chris Wallin

    Eutectic alloy with Strontium & Lithium?

    Hello! I am looking for a eutectic (liquid) alloy that includes Strontium and Lithium at or near room temperature. Does anyone have an idea of where to look for it? Thanks!
  21. Chris Wallin

    A HF pulsed UV light effect on metal alloy

    I'm trying to understand the effect on a metal alloy of UV light (diode or laser) pulsing at about 1MHz. I am assuming that the stirring of atoms will generate heat, possibly moving the alloy to its eutectic point (depending on the alloy) and in particular to atomic motion. Can anyone...
  22. Searay330

    Finding temperature coefficient of resistivity of the alloy

    Suppose a wire made from an unknown alloy and having a temperature of 20.0°C carries a current of 0.529 A. At 52.4°C the current is 0.378 A for the same potential difference. Find the temperature coefficient of resistivity of the alloy. tempinital = 20C tempfinal = 52.4C currentInital = .529A...
  23. U

    Approximate mass of special alloys in a nuclear reactor?

    Approximately, what is the total mass of these materials that is contained in a "typical" Gen III or III+ PWR (e.g., EPR, AP1000...)? 1/ Zr alloy (fuel cladding and other assembly components)? 2/ Ag-In-Cd alloy (control rods)? 3/ Gd (burnable neutron absorber)? 4/ Ni-based alloys? 5/ Stainless...
  24. Y

    Need to purchase Single and Bi-crystals of Al-Cu alloy

    Hi All, I'm interested in purchasing Single and Bi-crystals of an Al-Cu alloy but most manufacturers that I've contacted deny saying that they only specialize in making them out of pure metals. Any direction/ advice on how I should proceed. Thanks.
  25. B

    Shape Memory Alloy: 2+ Remembered Shapes?

    Are there any material that allows 2 plus remembered shapes that is similar to shape memory alloy?
  26. M

    What is differential of Alloy and MMC?

    We can find differential of alloy and composite. MMC is came from 2 differential of metal, one from it aren't melting same as producing alloy. but there are might produce new reaction. ex: C with Fe, the name is carbon steel. the nano-composite just too, but the particle aren't big, and the size...
  27. mesa

    Looking for HK31A alloy, mag-thor (Mg Th, Magnesium Thorium).

    I am trying to locate HK31A (magnesium thorium alloy) for a research project. I have tried my usual suppliers but they came up empty handed. Calls were then placed to the major magnesium alloy manufacturers (e.g. Magnesium Elektron) but to no avail. Upon further investigation the manufacturers...
  28. K

    Photonic Devices - Bowing Parameters of Ternary Semiconductor Alloy

    Homework Statement Homework Equations Shown in question. The Attempt at a Solution So I was given this question for homework and I'm really not sure where to start. I'm not looking for somebody to do my homework for me, just somebody to point me in the right direction. The...
  29. F

    Quenching aluminium and aluminium alloy

    Hello. I got two questions. 1. Why does aluminium become more ductile if one rapidly quench it. 2. Why does aluminium alloys(not heat treatable alloys) become more ductile when it is rapidly cooled from solubility temperature. I have read through my notes from lectures, but could not find...
  30. N

    Need formula for particular metal alloy, requirements inside

    If you have a knife edge (dual sided at 45°, 1/8" thick, and you want as little deformation as possible under a 50 lb. load, what would be the ideal alloy? Harden steel? Tungsten? High carbon steel? Application: two point guitar tremolo, total tension being around 100 lbs. Looking...
  31. J

    Alloy composition from component densities (Lagrange Multipliers)

    Homework Statement An alloy of gold, aluminum, and copper has a density of 10,000 kg/m3. The alloy contains at least 10% aluminum and 5% copper by mass. The densities for the three metals are respectively ρAu = 19320 kg/m3, ρAl = 2712 kg/m3, ρCu = 8940 kg/m3. Find the maximum and minimum...
  32. M

    Difficulty in electroetching of 1050 aluminum alloy

    Dear friends I have tried to electroetch 1050 aluminum alloy by 5ml phosphoric acid + 95ml H2o under 1 to 10 volts. However, it was a complete failure even after etching for 6 min. Please help me if you know how to overcome this problem. Thank you very much Best regards
  33. D

    Mass, density, volume: Find the volume of an alloy

    Homework Statement "An alloy of copper and tin has a volume of 100cm^3. The density of the copper is 8900 kgm^-3 and tin 7300kgm^-3. How much volume of each metal must be used if the alloy is to have the density of 7620kgm^-3? Homework Equations Volume x density = Mass The...
  34. X

    Friction during extrusion of Aluminum alloy

    Can anyone provide information on the quality of extruded parts tolerance from 6061 and 6063 Aluminum alloy. I would like to have very tight tolerance on the dimension and have a choice of these 2 alloys, which one would be a preferred material ? Is there any information on the viscosity of...
  35. A

    Identifying Mysterious Dense Alloy: EDF 32851

    I would like to identify a mysteriously dense metal I have in my possession. I bought a big box of engineering bits, along with a lathe, and found what I thought were High Speed Steel tool blanks which felt very heavy. I worked out the relative density and it is an amazing 16.97. The material is...
  36. V

    My Alloy Question: Material Composition of 3 Alloys

    I found three different type of alloy. 1. Not shiny or 2. Shiny or [Broken] or [Broken] What is the the material composition of these alloys?
  37. N

    Suggestions for Alloy with Protons in Randomized Spin State

    I am looking for an alloy which has its protons in a randomized spin state? I.e. not affected by gravity. Any suggestions? Thank you.
  38. D

    Shape memory alloy transformation problem

    A friend of mine is working with shape memory alloys and he's got one that is behaving strangely. At "low" temperatures a "fresh" solution heat treated sample will form martensite upon cooling, and austenite upon heating as expected. Heat and cool all you want and you get the transformation...
  39. G

    Discover the Power of Focusing and Directing Magnetic Fields | BBC Video

    Okay I was trolling youtube (I know its a horrible habit I have that keeps me from sleeping at night) and I came across this BBC video. Its only 47 seconds but it BRIEFLY describes a material that can Focus and concentrate electromagnetic fields and I can't find anythng else on the web, any...
  40. D

    Why does solder (or braze alloy) flow towards heat?

    You hear it over and over again, that solder or braze alloy will flow towards the heat. Another way of saying this is it flows towards hotter metal and away from colder metal. I've done enough soldering to see that it certainly appears to be true. But I've never heard, nor have I found, a...
  41. S

    An alloy of all stable metals

    Is it possible to make an alloy with all possible stable (non-radioactive) metals? I've googled around, and I couldn't find one, and also couldn't find a reason why it hasn't been made. If its not possible, what is the reason behind it?
  42. C

    Alloy compounds vs alloy solid solutions?

    Hi, What is the difference between alloy compounds and solid solutions I understand so far that solid solutions are homogeneous in composition, which must mean that one, two or more different atoms have same crystal packing structure when combined to form a solid solution.
  43. D

    Calculating number of atoms in an alloy

    Homework Statement Germanium forms a substitutional solid solution with silicon. Compute the number of germanium atoms per cubic centimeter for a germanium-silicon alloy that contains 15 wt% Ge and 85 wt% Si. The densities of pure germanium and silicon are 5.32 and 2.33 g/cm3...
  44. E

    Calculating SHC of an alloy

    Homework Statement I have done an experiment in which I measured the specific heat capacity of a coin. I would like to compare the results to the actual value. I have found out that the coin is made of Cupronickel alloy (for simplicity let's assume it's just 75% copper and 25% nickel)...
  45. J

    Constructing a Liquid Mirror using gallium,Indium, tin alloy

    Hi, I am an an artist hoping that you scientists can kindly help me with some advice. I am making a simple liquid mirror as part of a project about reflected image. It will spin and stop and spin and stop etc. I have made a polyester resin parabola as a receptical (so that I can use less...
  46. P

    Solidification of an alloy

    Why does an alloy solidify over a range of temperature unlike a pure metal. Consider Al-17Si alloy. Growth of primary Si after undercooling does not take place at liquidus temperature but temperature keeps on decreasing until it reaches eutectic arrest temperature. I am not able to understand...
  47. K

    Name of the steel alloy? ?

    Name of the steel alloy?!? Hi, can someone please tell me how can I find out the name of an alloy if I have its composition? Here are the percentages of each element inside: Composition in % (min ;max) C ( - ; 0.05) Si...
  48. A

    Need to find out the name of this alloy

    I have the composition for this alloy that I have to find out which metallic material it is supposed to be: Fe:96.23% C:0.623% Cr:1.098% Ni:1.0028% Si:0.4219 My guess it it is among the tool steels family but I can't be sure...
  49. L

    Jominy Quench test of different steel alloy samples

    Hi, So the other day we performed the Jominy quench test on 4 different steel samples. We followed the standard procedure (heating to austenite, then quenching it at one end, then polishing and etch it for micrograph examination) Now I need to write about the expected phases in each steel sample...
  50. S

    Maximum bending moment in aluminium alloy beam

    I have three questions and need to calculate the magnitude of the maximum bending moment 1) A 4 m long aluminium alloy beam, simply supported at its ends, carries a central concentrated load of 2 kN. The T-cross-section of the beam (see Figure A2) consists of a rectangular flange and web...