Metal foams: a design guide
Ashby MF, Evans AG, Hutchinson JW, Fleck NA.
CUED technical report, CUED/C-MICROMECH/TR.3, version 4, Aug. 1998.
Metal foams are a new, as yet imperfectly-characterised, class of materials with low densities and
novel mechanical, thermal, electrical and - it is claimed - acoustic properties. They offer
potential for light-weight structures, for energy absorption, and for thermal management; and some
of them, at least, are cheap. Section 1.1 expands on the philosophy behind this design-guide.
Section 1.2 summarises briefly how metal foams are made. Section 1.3 lists applications which have
been suggested for them.
The contents of the guide summarise results of recent research in a format which wil be accessible
to the design engineer. No gaurantee can be given for the accuracy of the data. The presentation
is deliberately kept as simple as possible. Readers seeking more information should consult the
references in the footnotes on individual pages. General information about foams can be found in
the text by Gibson and Ashby*.
* Gibson, L.J. and Ashby, M.F. (1997) "Cellular Solids, Structure and Properties" 2nd
edition, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.