Advances in New Multifunctional Hard Materials

A special issue of Crystals (ISSN 2073-4352). This special issue belongs to the section "Crystalline Metals and Alloys".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 December 2024 | Viewed by 415

Special Issue Editors

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
CEIT—Basque Research and Technology Alliance (BRTA), Manuel Lardizabal 15, 20018 Donostia, Spain
Interests: hard materials; powder metallurgy; thermodynamic simulation; mechanical properties

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Sustainable Powder Technologies—IMDEA Materials Institute, 28906 Getafe, Spain
Interests: materials science; aerospace engineering; hard materials; cermets; stainless steels; high-entropy alloys; Ni-based superalloys; thermodynamic simulation; 3D design; microstructural analysis; mechanical characterization; powder metallurgy; additive manufacturing

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Institute of Ceramic and Glass—CSIC, 28049 Madrid, Spain
2. CIEFMA–Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya-Barcelona TECH, Campus Diagonal Besòs (EEBE), C. d'Eduard Maristany 10-14, 08019 Barcelona, Spain
Interests: mechanical properties; microstructural characterization; hard materials; cermets; hardness; nanoindentation

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, 28911 Leganés, Spain
Interests: powder metallurgy; titanium alloys; inorganic composites; co-free hardmetals; surface treatments and coatings; additive manufacturing
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Cemented carbides composed of WC and Co provide an excellent combination of hardness, fracture toughness and wear resistance. Nevertheless, the hard metal industry has become interested in the partial or total substitution of W and Co, not only due to economic factors—impinged by their use in Li-ion batteries in the automotive industry and their classification as CMRs (Critical Raw Materials)—but also health concerns (REACH-UE and NTP-US programs).

In recent years, there have been several publications about alternative metallic binders, such as Fe, Ni and HEAs (High-Entropy Alloys); alternative ceramic phases, such as titanium and tungsten borides, niobium carbide, titanium, vanadium, and tantalum carbonitrides; and HECs (High-Entropy Carbides). Recently, the additive manufacturing of hard metals, especially using the binder jetting technique, seems to be an alternative to traditional powder metallurgy. The good performance of these new materials depends on the tailoring of several factors, such as the starting powders, processing route, and microstructure, which lead to optimum mechanical properties for specific applications.

Dr. Tomas Soria-Biurrun
Dr. María de Nicolás Morillas
Dr. Hossein Besharatloo
Prof. Dr. Elena Gordo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Crystals is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • alternative metallic binders
  • alternative ceramic phases
  • additive manufacturing
  • conventional proccesing
  • microstructural characterization
  • mechanical properties

Published Papers (1 paper)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:


12 pages, 5475 KiB  
Printing Direction Effects on the Sliding Contact Response of a Binder Jetting 3D-Printed WC-Co Hardmetal
by Laura Cabezas, Christian Berger, Emilio Jiménez-Piqué, Johannes Pötschke and Luis Llanes
Crystals 2024, 14(6), 573; - 20 Jun 2024
Viewed by 206
Binder jetting additive manufacturing offers a promising route to produce complex geometries in cemented carbides (WC-Co), but it may introduce direction-dependent microstructural variations potentially affecting wear resistance. This study investigates the influence of printing direction on the sliding contact response of 3D-printed and [...] Read more.
Binder jetting additive manufacturing offers a promising route to produce complex geometries in cemented carbides (WC-Co), but it may introduce direction-dependent microstructural variations potentially affecting wear resistance. This study investigates the influence of printing direction on the sliding contact response of 3D-printed and subsequently sintered (BJT) WC-12%Co. Prismatic specimens were printed along two orientations and subjected to single and repetitive scratch tests on three orthogonal faces. The microstructure, Vickers and scratch hardness, and wear rate were analyzed. The results showed a heterogeneous microstructure consisting of a matrix of fine carbides where several large particles where embedded. It was different from the homogenous microstructural scenarios exhibited by conventionally pressed and sintered fine- and coarse-grained hardmetals, used as reference for comparison purposes. The influence of printing direction on either the microstructure or mechanical properties of BJT specimens was found to be negligible. Interestingly, BJT samples exhibited superior wear resistance than the reference hardmetals, even though the hardness levels were alike for all the studied hardmetal grades. Such behavior is attributed to the co-existence of coarse and fine carbides within the microstructure, combining the energy absorption capability of the former with the inherent strength of the latter. These findings, together with the intrinsic flexibility and versatility advantages associated with additive manufacturing, highlight the potential of BJT hardmetals to be used in applications where contact load bearing or wear resistance are critical design parameters. Finally, the effectiveness of implementing an iterative sliding contact test for evaluating wear behavior in cemented carbides was also validated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in New Multifunctional Hard Materials)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop