This is the second of two volumes in the ASM Handbook that present information on compositions, properties, selection, and applications of metals and alloys. In the first volume, irons, steels, and superalloys were described. In the present volume, nonferrous alloys, superconducting materials, pure metals, and materials developed for use in special applications are reviewed. In addition to being vastly expanded from the coverage offered in the 9th Edition, these companion volumes document some of the more important changes and developments that have taken place in materials science during the past decade—changes that undoubtedly will continue to impact materials engineering into the 21st century. Examples of some of the materials addressed in this Volume are shown in Fig. 1.
During the 1970s and '80s, the metals industry was forced to respond to the challenges brought about by rapid advancements in composite, plastic, and ceramic technology. During this time, the use of metals in a number of key industries declined. For example, Fig. 2 shows materials selection trends in the aircraft industries. As can be seen, the use of aluminum, titanium, and other structural materials is expected to level off during the 1990s, while polymer-matrix composites, carbon-carbon composites, and ceramic-matrix composites probably will continue to see increased application. However, this increasing competition has also spurred new alloy development that will ensure that metals will remain competitive in the aerospace industry. Some of these new or improved materials and methods include:
Ingot metallurgy aluminum-lithium alloys for airframe components that have densities 7 to 12% lower and stiffnesses 15 to 20% higher than existing high-strength aluminum alloys
High-strength aluminum P/M alloys made by rapid solidification or mechanical alloying
Advances in processing of titanium alloys that have resulted in improved elevated-temperature performance
The continuing development and research of metal-matrix composites and intermetallic alloys such as Ni3Al, Fe3Al, and Ti3Al
These are but four of the many new developments in nonferrous metallurgy that are documented in Volume 2's 1300 pages.