The bodywork of cars is now made of steel, as the material is common, easy to process and relatively inexpensive. A few years ago, however, the coarse scientists developed a brand new steel called Flash Bainite, which has now been refined enough to be used in the automotive industry to make lighter, more economical and cheaper cars.

Flash Bainite is a material developed in 2011, which is basically a hot-formed steel, but with a very interesting characteristics. The material is cheaper than the typical steel, and much less energy is needed to process it, which of course accelerates production. It is also more durable than the aluminum of the same weight, yet plastic enough to be pressed from it, without reducing the thickness and risk of cracking.

Currently the material is tested by three major automotive companies, and the results of these tests are extremely promising. It can produce much thinner components of the car, which will be 30-50% lighter than the same components made of steel and significantly cheaper from them, while retaining the same strength during crash tests.

One of the Flash Bainite producers has produced an element that has a thickness of 2 mm and a weight of 0.9 kg. The product has passed all safety tests at the same steel made of 3 mm thick and weighs 1.4 kg. Experts estimate that with the new material, about 1/3 will reduce the weight of the new cars, and the companies will save a lot of money on the cost of their production.

Steven Mills

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