Argentium Silver

Argentium Silver Band

Human beings have been smithing silver for millennia. I was surprised to learn, therefore, that significant advances in silver metallurgy have been made as recently as the 1990s. Sterling silver, by definition, contains 92.5 wt% silver metal and 7.5% other metals, traditionally mostly copper. In 1998, however, Peter Johns of... Read more »

ShapeShift Electroactive Polymer Sheets

ShapeShift EAP Actuator Construxtion

DIY methods for electroactive polymer actuators are hard to come by, and none of them are kitchen-counter simple. But compared to the wet chemical methods circulating in the academic research community, the purely mechanical process documented in this video from the Swiss ShapeShift project is relatively accessible. Click here to... Read more »

Enlarging Casting Resin

HydroSpan 100

HydroSpan 100, from Houston-based Industrial Polymers Corporation, is billed as “a 3 dimensional copy machine enlarging any shape or design in near perfect proportion and detail.” Shown uppermost, a Morgan silver dollar from 1896, enlarged via three generations of HydroSpan 100 casting to about the size of a salad plate.... Read more »

EL Wire Project Sampler

elwirebike1

As Advanced Materials Month enters its final week, we’re gathering together some of the coolest projects from the dusty archives of MAKE. Next up, projects using electro-luminescent wire! Above, check out this bicycle with pedal-powered EL wire! Read more »

Gorilla Glass

Four-point glass strength test

Reportedly, fully 20 percent—some 200 million—of the world’s mobile devices incorporate a clear cover made of Corning’s Gorilla Glass brand toughened aluminosilicate glass. Depending on the particular test used to make the determination, Gorilla Glass is seven or eight times stronger than the common soda-lime glasses used, for instance, in... Read more »

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