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Materials 2017, 10(8), 922; doi:10.3390/ma10080922

From Stochastic Foam to Designed Structure: Balancing Cost and Performance of Cellular Metals

1
ISIS Sensorial Materials Scientific Centre, University of Bremen, 28359 Bremen, Germany
2
MAPEX Center for Materials and Processes, University of Bremen, 28359 Bremen, Germany
3
Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, University of Maribor, 2000 Maribor, Slovenia
4
Department of Flow, Heat and Combustion Mechanics, Ghent University, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
5
School of Engineering, The University of Newcastle, Callaghan NSW 2308, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 July 2017 / Revised: 1 August 2017 / Accepted: 1 August 2017 / Published: 8 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metal Foams: Synthesis, Characterization and Applications)
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Abstract

Over the past two decades, a large number of metallic foams have been developed. In recent years research on this multi-functional material class has further intensified. However, despite their unique properties only a limited number of large-scale applications have emerged. One important reason for this sluggish uptake is their high cost. Many cellular metals require expensive raw materials, complex manufacturing procedures, or a combination thereof. Some attempts have been made to decrease costs by introducing novel foams based on cheaper components and new manufacturing procedures. However, this has often yielded materials with unreliable properties that inhibit utilization of their full potential. The resulting balance between cost and performance of cellular metals is probed in this editorial, which attempts to consider cost not in absolute figures, but in relation to performance. To approach such a distinction, an alternative classification of cellular metals is suggested which centers on structural aspects and the effort of realizing them. The range thus covered extends from fully stochastic foams to cellular structures designed-to-purpose. View Full-Text
Keywords: cellular metal; metallic foam; metal foam; porous materials; lattice materials; costs; manufacturing; additive manufacturing; mechanical properties; energy absorption cellular metal; metallic foam; metal foam; porous materials; lattice materials; costs; manufacturing; additive manufacturing; mechanical properties; energy absorption
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lehmhus, D.; Vesenjak, M.; Schampheleire, S.D.; Fiedler, T. From Stochastic Foam to Designed Structure: Balancing Cost and Performance of Cellular Metals. Materials 2017, 10, 922.

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