Ultralight and highly durable materials in automotive and aviation constructions
The main directions of the conducted research in the subarea "ultralight and highly durable materials in automotive and aviation constructions" include the production, characterization and application of light materials, composite materials containing micro and macrostructural components, e.g. carbon with new, higher performance properties, metal-ceramic composites with intended to work in complex load conditions, mainly in friction nodes. Development and expansion of the application potential of light polymer composites, resin composites containing piezoelectric nanocomponents allowing for construction monitoring, as well as the use of materials showing the shape memory effect in polymer composites. Scientists from the Silesian University of Technology conduct scientific and research work in the field of design, synthesis and characterization of new ceramic materials with ultra-low thermal conductivity, based on zirconates, ceranes, hafniates, niobates and tantalates of rare earth elements. In the field of designing and developing new, effective technologies for producing metals and their alloys, work is carried out on light metal alloys with medium and high entropy - HEA and gradient materials - FGM (Functionally Graded Materials) for active noise control. In the field of modern casting alloys for the automotive industry, Specialists from the Silesian University of Technology deal with the implementation of casting technology for non-ferrous metal alloys, modern grades of cast iron, as well as light, lattice frame and layered castings, among others drive elements, gear housings, bearings and supporting structures. In this area, research teams are also developing new magnesium alloys and composites based on magnesium alloys with increased strength and creep resistance, the manufacturing technology of which includes the selection of chemical composition, their casting and plastic processing. Research is being conducted on the behavior of this type of materials under stress corrosion destruction - SCC, especially in environments containing hydrogen.
An important trend in the research is the search for new steels with a controlled structure and increased plasticity, intended for the automotive industry. High-strength multiphase steels with a wide range of deformation strengthening, working under dynamic loads, are used for highly loaded elements of the vehicle skeleton. The synergy of mechanical properties and lower density than conventional steels, as well as the design of nano and ultra-fine-grained structures, constitute a new quality of steel construction materials developed at the Silesian University of Technology.
Thanks to the cooperation and for the needs of the aviation industry, the Silesian University of Technology conducts scientific and research works in the field of advanced techniques of shaping stampings from heat-resistant nickel superalloys, by shaping sheets with liquid - hydroforming, as well as works related to welding and surfacing of modern light metal alloys, which the purpose is to determine the possibility of joining, surfacing and repairing defects, e.g. in the casting process, with the use of laser technologies, welding technology with solid-state mixing - FSW, as well as gluing processes.
The materials and technologies developed by the Scientists of the Silesian University of Technology go beyond the currently known and used solutions, which creates great opportunities to influence world science and trends in the field of materials technologies.