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Old 04-29-2015, 02:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Modumetal "Adamantium"

I found a YouTube video where some bald Canadian gave vague descriptions of ten real Sci Fi technologies and he mentioned this stuff. I did not find much, just:

Quote:
Various scraps of metal are dissolved in acid and then recreated with a series of electric charges that alter the atomic structure of the metal. Using electric charges, the metals are shaped as they grow so they conform to a mold placed inside the tank. Alternatively for coatings, an item is placed in a tank containing metal ions. Specialized electrical currents are then applied to bind specific ions to the item with varying degrees of currents binding specific ions.
Growing Metals with Modumetal - Nanalyze

and

Quote:
[Y]ou can get the metal alloy to grow onto it in ultra-thin layers (down to a thickness of 1 nanometer, or a billionth of a meter). These materials are called “nanolaminates.” The molecular structure of the layers can be adjusted to make the resulting alloy resistant to shattering, resistant to being penetrated or deformed, and lightweight—material properties that usually can’t be combined. “How the layers grow is our secret sauce,” says Lomasney. “It’s like grass growing, you can watch it.”

The result? Metals that can be used to make stronger armor—at half the weight of the conventional steel used in military vehicles such as Humvees. Modumetal’s method can also yield fully-formed specialized metal parts without the need for complex processing steps like machining.
Modumetal Grows Nanotech Metals for Military, Aiming To Make Parts For Your Car | Xconomy

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Old 04-29-2015, 02:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Modumetal’s method can also yield fully-formed specialized metal parts without the need for complex processing steps like machining.
Yeah, because machining is so complex compared to growing metal. Seems like a great way to make steel cost as much as silicon computer chips.
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Old 04-30-2015, 12:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Imagine triple chrome plating a part with an electrolyte that contains copper, nickel and chrome all at once, then modulating the current to lay down each material in nano-scale layers.

It appears that that is what the claim is.
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by redpoint5 View Post
Seems like a great way to make steel cost as much as silicon computer chips.
Though the actual silicon in a computer chip doesn't cost all that much. Even after all the intensive processing and laying down patterns on the chip, it's maybe a few bucks for a CPU. What costs is all the work that goes into developing the logic that is encoded into the specific circuit patterns.
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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And the massively expensive machinery used to create the microchips. Most of this tech is accurate to at least the micrometer, if not better.
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Old 04-30-2015, 03:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The width of traces on a chip are currently in the 10s of nanometers scale. Fabbing chips is essentially an expensive means of developing a photograph.

Materials scientists are working on other means of self-organizing assembly on small scales.
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Old 04-30-2015, 04:51 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
Though the actual silicon in a computer chip doesn't cost all that much. Even after all the intensive processing and laying down patterns on the chip, it's maybe a few bucks for a CPU. What costs is all the work that goes into developing the logic that is encoded into the specific circuit patterns.
Even without the logic, the wafers themselves are expensive and require high tech robots, chemistry, machining, and inspection. I work at a wafer fab, which is probably why I thought of computer chips when thinking of how growing metals into specific shapes sounds expensive.
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Old 04-30-2015, 07:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Self-assembly of nanoparticles - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I don't pretend to understand all of that, especially 3.2.2.2 Large Amplitude Oscillatory Shear (LAOS).

It could be more like developing Kodachrome or photocopying than fabbing chips.
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Old 05-01-2015, 01:47 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpoint5 View Post
Even without the logic, the wafers themselves are expensive and require high tech robots, chemistry, machining, and inspection.
Perhaps the wafers are expensive, but you get quite a number of chips per wafer, so the cost per CPU isn't that much. And when you look at less complex parts - simple logic chips, LEDs, even PV - the cost is pretty low.

Also, if I understand it correctly, the tech isn't limited to "machining" parts of uniform composition. It can create microstructured composites. Think e.g. creating something like a seashell: Seashells Get Their Strength from Interlocking 'Bricks'
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Old 05-01-2015, 04:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
'Seashells Get Their Strength from Interlocking 'Bricks'
And they look good doing it, especially abalone nacre. I like materials science.

Here is <<Biorock - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia>>



I talked to this guy Wolf Hilbertz at a time when he was being 'negotiated' against by the concrete industry. Wikipedia kind of papers over why he fled to Germany, but it's now 'cathodic protection' for failing concrete structures, essentially gluing them back together:

Applicability of Electrodeposition as a Repairing Method for Deteriorated Marine Concrete Structures

Mr Hilbertz was thinking more in terms of a 3D printer head on an arm that would would extrude or eat building members as necessary. I've still got the original paper he did somewhere. His method reportedly would fill a simple wooden mold, similar to the claim by Modumetal.

Also Hilbetz had to pulse his DC bias negative occasionally to drive off hydrogen bubbles. These guys may have just found a means of modulating AC to find the sweet spot. Or, I suppose, not...

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