The World’s First Liquid Metal Lattice

Emma | 10 - 01 - 2020
The World’s First Liquid Metal Lattice

Researchers have developed the world’s first liquid metal lattice! It is a liquid metal design that could make way for devices that fully heal themselves when they get damaged.

According to their research, liquid metal design begins with Field’s alloy- it’s a kind of metal that is made from indium, bismuth and tin that melt at the relatively low temperature of 62 degrees Celsius. That’s low enough to melt in hot water. But when the alloy is cooled, it solidifies, becoming as tough as most other metals.  

What Is Liquid Metal?

Liquid metal is a metal alloy that is completely a liquid near room temperature. Elemental metals at or near room temperature are known Mercury (Hg) and also includes Francium (Fr), Caesium (Cs), Rubidium (Rb), Mercury (Hg), and Gallium (Ga), which can be defined as liquid metals too.

What Is the Heaviest Liquid on Earth?
  • A. Gasoline
  • B. Bromine
  • C. Mercury
  • D. Scorpion venom

These liquid metals will melt at the same temperature of field alloy- that is near or at room temperature. This enables them to remain in a liquid state at room temperature

 How to Make Liquid Metal

A liquid metal consists of alloys with very low cooling points which form a eutectic that is liquid at or near room temperature. The standard metal used to be mercury, but gallium-based alloys, which are lower both in their vapor pressure at room temperature and toxicity, are being used as a replacement in various applications for this process.

Terminator Liquid Metal

Terminator 2: Judgment Day is a 1991 American science fiction action film produced and directed by James Cameron. In Terminator, the killer robot sent from a grim future can transform into anyone and anything in pursuit of its human prey. 

Pu Zhang, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Binghamton University, State University of New York, when told maybe that’s not the best comparison, Zhang laughed and made a confession: “To be honest, I’ve never watched that movie!”

Zhang developed what he calls “the first liquid metal lattice in the world,” which is made from Field’s alloy. The mix of bismuth, indium, and tin – named after its inventor, Simon Quellen Field – becomes liquid at the relatively low melting point of 62° Celsius.

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