PNNL creates lightweight metal - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

PNNL creates lightweight metal

Posted: Updated:

RICHLAND, WA - "Friction Stir Dovetailing"- Have you ever heard of that? Probably not…That's the name of a project the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is working on.

This new project is a machine that is able to combine steel and aluminum in order to create a lighter-weight metal for military vehicles.

Scott Whalen is a Senior Research Engineer at PNNL and he says "The material is actually solid," and to put it in the simplest terms: "It's almost like putting your finger in honey and stirring it around."

In more scientific terms: this is how is all works…

"The elements of the aluminum and the steel are diffusing together right at the interface to create a metallic glue," said Scott Whalen.

Whalen says this would have a huge impact on the way military vehicles operate because the device is able to make vehicles not only fuel efficient but also more agile.

The project goes beyond just military vehicles too. In the future passenger vehicles may also be able to use it.

"We are looking at passenger vehicles too. Anytime you can get rid of steel, you can make the car lighter," said Whalen.

HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Tri-CitiesTri-Cities NewsMore>>

  • Craigslist Scamming around Tri-Cities

    Craigslist Scamming around Tri-Cities

    Sunday, September 23 2018 11:59 PM EDT2018-09-24 03:59:18 GMT

    Online shopping has easily become one of the main ways we buy things, whether it's clothes, electronics, or even groceries. But while its is convenient, it's also risky and some popular websites are now becoming targets for scammers. 

    More >>

    Online shopping has easily become one of the main ways we buy things, whether it's clothes, electronics, or even groceries. But while its is convenient, it's also risky and some popular websites are now becoming targets for scammers. 

    More >>
  • Four fires start within a half hour of each other along Queensgate exit

    Four fires start within a half hour of each other along Queensgate exit

    Sunday, September 23 2018 9:51 PM EDT2018-09-24 01:51:21 GMT

    RICHLAND, WA- Four fires sparked near the Queensgate exits Sunday afternoon. Duty Chief Scott Hawley with Benton County Fire District 2 said they all sparked within thirty minutes of each other starting at 1:30 p.m. The fires stretched from the 3B exit and up I-182 and caused one lane of the highway to be shut down. Multiple agencies had to be called in since there were several of them. Hawley said that wind probably played a factor in the spreading of the fires. Combined, roug...

    More >>

    RICHLAND, WA- Four fires sparked near the Queensgate exits Sunday afternoon. Duty Chief Scott Hawley with Benton County Fire District 2 said they all sparked within thirty minutes of each other starting at 1:30 p.m. The fires stretched from the 3B exit and up I-182 and caused one lane of the highway to be shut down. Multiple agencies had to be called in since there were several of them. Hawley said that wind probably played a factor in the spreading of the fires. Combined, roug...

    More >>
  • Man dies after car goes off road and hits rock wall in ditch

    Man dies after car goes off road and hits rock wall in ditch

    Sunday, September 23 2018 9:19 PM EDT2018-09-24 01:19:44 GMT
    KENNEWICK, WA- A man was found dead Sunday morning after his car went down into a ditch and hit a rock wall. The Benton County Sheriff's Office said it happened in the area of Badger Road and South Webber Canyon Road. 41-year-old Paul S. Samson had been driving southbound on Webber Canyon Road when he drifted off the edge of the roadway, went down into a ditch, and hit the rock wall embankment head on.  Samson died at the scene. Deputies said the airbags were deployed and that...More >>
    KENNEWICK, WA- A man was found dead Sunday morning after his car went down into a ditch and hit a rock wall. The Benton County Sheriff's Office said it happened in the area of Badger Road and South Webber Canyon Road. 41-year-old Paul S. Samson had been driving southbound on Webber Canyon Road when he drifted off the edge of the roadway, went down into a ditch, and hit the rock wall embankment head on.  Samson died at the scene. Deputies said the airbags were deployed and that...More >>