GLRPPR: Sector Resources: Documents: Nanostructured Copper Alloys as an Alternative to Copper-Beryllium
 
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GLRPPR Sector Resource: Nanostructured Copper Alloys as an Alternative to Copper-Beryllium

Title:
Nanostructured Copper Alloys as an Alternative to Copper-Beryllium

Abstract:
For decades, certain essential parts in military fixed and rotary wing platforms have been made with copper-beryllium alloys. Beryllium is particularly useful for this purpose because it is both lightweight and strong, a rare combination not found in most other metals. Bushings, small round metal components used in helicopter rotors, for example, must be lightweight, but also strong enough to withstand a demanding operating environment. The problem is beryllium is a toxic material that can be harmful to workers who handle it during assembly and repair. Working with beryllium, which requires donning protective gear and taking extensive precautions, is costly and time-consuming. A SERDP-funded project developed and validated a nanocrystalline copper electroplating process that produces an environmentally benign copper alloy that matches the desirable properties of copper-beryllium. This pulsed electroplating process, developed by Dr. Jonathan McCrea and Dr. Brandon Bouwhuis at Integran Technologies Inc., goes beyond merely coating a metal object. Rather, components that require little to no machining to achieve final dimensions are created by this pulsed-plating process, which alters the crystalline structure of the metal alloys as they are being formed. The study showed this innovative process also can be used successfully for large metal sheets and high conductivity wires, both of which are used in multiple military applications.

URL:
http://www.serdp-estcp.org/Program-Areas/Weapons-Systems-and-Platforms/Surface-Engineering-and-Structural-Materials/Composites-Alloys-and-Ceramics/WP-2137

Source:
Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP)

Resource Type:
Article/report

Date of Publication:
May 2014

Associated Sectors:

GLRPPR is a member of the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange, a national network of regional information centers: NEWMOA (Northeast), WRRC (Southeast), GLRPPR (Great Lakes), ZeroWasteNet (Southwest), P2RIC (Plains), Peaks to Prairies (Mountain), WSPPN (Pacific Southwest), PPRC (Northwest).

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