Saturday, October 22, 2005

The great hybrid way!

Prof. M.F. Ashby, that master of materials-property charts, has written an extremely accessible and interesting paper on some aspects of the design of engineering materials:
Hybrids to fill holes in materials property space, M.F. Ashby, Philosophical magazine, Vol. 85, Nos. 26-27, 11-21 September 2005, 3235-3257.
So, what is the idea? Here it goes:
...the idea of hybrid materials -- combinations of two or more materials assembled in such a way as to have attributes not offered by either one alone.
Much like mules, the hybrid of horses and donkeys (An analogy used by Prof. Ashby himself). In short, to exploit the `hybrid vigour'. A cool idea, wouldn't you say?

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