In the autumn of 2012, exciting things were happening at Sports Technology, the Department of Technology and Sustainable Development. In collaboration with the company Exmet AB, researchers were testing a new method to manufacture so-called amorphous metal. The result was highly successful.
An amorphous metal is 2 – 15 times stronger than “ordinary” metals. It is also extremely elastic, highly resistant and almost always non-corrosive. By using a very specific method of manufacturing, electron beam melting (EBM), components with extremely complex forms can also be manufactured through one single process, a dream for the manufacturing industry.
The patent for the manufacturing of amorphous metals using beam-based methods is owned by the Swedish company Exmet AB. Today, they are among other things working in collaboration with Öhlins Racing, who makes components for shock absorbing systems in motor sports, ABB and the 3D printer manufacturer EOS.
– Our product is a “green metal”, because it saves energy in several ways. For one thing, we can make metal components 90 per cent lighter using the amorphous metal. That means that vehicles with components made from our material will use significantly less fuel. Also, due to its magnetic properties, the material can reduce the energy loss in electromagnetic products by 80 per cent, says Mattias Unosson, Doctor of Philosophy in Science and CEO of Exmet AB.