High Performance Materials

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Kirsten Bobzin

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Lecture and Exam information


The class “ High Performance Materials” provides in-depth knowledge about the diversity of materials used in demanding applications. The structure and phase formation of matter, the mechanisms for influencing strength properties as well as the material behavior at elevated temperatures will be taught as a basis. Subsequently, the class will cover different groups of materials, starting with light metals and their alloys as well as the increasingly important high-melting transition metals. The course will extensively discuss hard metals, cermets, hard alloys, superalloys and intermetallic compounds. Furthermore, the class will convey topics from the definition of terms to the application to the constantly growing market of composite materials, material composites and nanomaterials. Alongside the respective material-related subjects, the class will introduce entire process chain from raw material extraction and processing to specific manufacturing processes and finally examples of practical high-performance applications.

Summary of the contents of High Performance Materials



1. Structure and phase formation

  • Stability of states
  • Atomic bindings and defects
  • Change of state
  • Diffusion

2. Strength of materials

  • Work hardening
  • Solid solution formation
  • Martensite transformation
  • Influence of grain size
  • Precipitation hardening
  • Dispersion hardening
  • Fibre-reinforced materials

3. Material behavior

  • Material behavior at elevated temperatures
  • High-temperature strength
  • Material behavior at low temperatures

4. Aluminum

  • Basics: Light metals and their alloys
  • Aluminum extraction
  • Alloying elements and their effects
  • Aluminum alloys and their properties
  • Application examples

5. Magnesium, Titanium, Beryllium

Extraction, properties, influence of alloying elements and application examples of:

  • Magnesium
  • Titanium
  • Beryllium

6. Refractory metals

  • Definition and introduction
  • Properties of the individual refractory metals
  • Ti, Zr, Nb, Ta, Mo, W, Cr, V, Hf

7. Cemented carbides

  • Definition of terms and historical background
  • Microstructure of cemented carbide
  • Features & Benefits
  • Coated tungsten carbides and tungsten carbide coatings