Icarus Project Czech Republic: Thermodynamically stable alloys – present stage
Research on these alloys has just started at the Czech start-up called AdvaMat established at the Department of Control Engineering at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering of the Czech Technical University in Prague in a group headed by Professor Tomáš Polcar. The project gained a prestigious FET Open grant within the scope of the Icarus project.
The aim is to develop thermodynamically stable alloys which could be used in aviation, space aeronautics and nuclear engineering. Tangible results could already be expected in 2018. An ambitious goal is to launch in a horizon of 3 years a space probe with first components made of these new thermodynamically stable alloys.
Material of the future
The Icarus project is based on a revolutionary study published in the journal Science which demonstrated that thermodynamically stable alloys can be obtained by applying nanotechnologies. The hitherto accepted fact that material grains grow with growing temperature and thus adversely affect the properties of the material (loss of strength, significant softening), must not always be true. New studies state that it is possible to produce alloys which due to nanostructured grains will be thermodynamically stable and consequently much more resistant to high temperatures and radiation.
The main application of these special alloys is in aircraft industry where more resistant materials will permit higher temperatures in jet engines and hence reduce fuel consumption; in space probes where due to the strength of these materials their weight could be reduced; in nuclear industry where they could increase the output of power stations; in special medical technologies or in the storage of nuclear fuel. The target of the Icarus project is to find the most suitable components and production technology of these alloys also from economic aspects.
Ambitious goal of Czech scientists – into space in three years
The Advanced Materials Group at the Department of Control Engineering, Faculty of Electrical Engineering of the Czech Technical University in Prague achieves long-time top results in research in the field of surface engineering, namely in solid thin films deposited by physical or chemical methods. The task of the AdvaMat start-up established at this group in the Icarus project is to create concepts of the production and testing of special alloys in dependence on theoretical calculations performed by other partners.
Source: Press report of the AdvaMat company