While the vast majority are aluminium matrix composites, a growing number of applications require the matrix properties of superalloys, titanium, copper, magnesium, or iron. Like all composite the stiffness, strength, density, and thermal and electrical properties can be customized The matrix alloy, the reinforcement material, the volume and shape of the reinforcement, the location of the reinforcement, and the fabrication method can all be varied to achieve required properties. Regardless of the variations, however, aluminium composites offer the advantage of low cost over most other Metal Matrix Composites. In addition, they offer excellent thermal conductivity, high shear strength, excellent abrasion resistance, high-temperature operation, no flammability, minimal attack by fuels and solvents, and the ability to be formed and treated on conventional equipment. Superalloy composites reinforced with tungsten alloy fibres are being developed for components in jet turbine engines. Copper reinforced with tungsten particles or aluminium oxide particles is used in heat sinks and electronic packaging. Titanium reinforced with silicon carbide fibres is under development as skin material for the National Aerospace Plane.
Metal Matrix Composite