are thousands of materials available for use in engineering applications.
Most materials fall into one of three classes that are based on
the atomic bonding forces of a particular material. These three
classifications are metallic, ceramic and polymeric. Additionally,
different materials can be combined to create a composite material.
Within each of these classifications, materials are often further
organized into groups based on their chemical composition or certain
physical or mechanical properties. Composite materials are often
grouped by the types of materials combined or the way the materials
are arranged together. Below is a list of some of the commonly
classification of materials within these four general groups of
- Ferrous metals and alloys (irons, carbon steels, alloy
steels, stainless steels, tool and die steels)
- Nonferrous metals and alloys (aluminum, copper, magnesium,
nickel, titanium, precious metals, refractory metals,
- Glass ceramics
- Metal-matrix composites
- Ceramic-matrix composites
- Sandwich structures
Each of these general groups will be discussed in more detail
in the following pages.