metallurgy

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Srinivasan Chandrasekar / Purdue University

Researchers at Purdue University have found a way to fix a long-standing issue in manufacturing, where cutting a piece of metal can make its edges splinter or break apart.

They hope their solution will reap big savings in fuel and production costs.

The problem is called a shear-band. It's a deformity that occurs when a cutting machine pushes through metal, scrunching up its edges at a microscopic level.

Courtesy H. Kory Cooper

Research from a Purdue anthropology professor has uncovered the first evidence of prehistoric metal trade between Asia and North America.

Anthropology professor and metallurgy expert H. Kory Cooper analyzed two objects uncovered in northern Alaska. The two tiny artifacts—a buckle and a small bead—are made of bronze. That’s important because bronze doesn’t occur in nature--it’s an alloy.

By looking at how such alloys are mixed, anthropologists can pinpoint metals age and where they’re from.