When combined in just the right amounts, nickel and titanium create Nitinol. Known for its unique superelastic and shape memory properties - the ability to remember and return to a specified shape after deformation when exposed to a predetermined temperature - this alloy is revolutionizing the way the medical device and other high-performance industries manufacture next-generation solutions.
There are two primary types of Nitinol: superelastic and shape memory, which are determined by transformation temperature. Superelastic Nitinol is cooler, and shape memory Nitinol is warmer. Don't let the description fool you - the same superelastic and shape memory effect is taking place regardless of category.
To help you pick the Nitinol that is best for your application, at Fort Wayne Metals, we divide the categories of superelastic and shape memory into grades with stricter temperature ranges. You can click over to the superelastic or shape memory pages to learn more.
Superelastic Nitinol is commonly used in medical devices. Transformation temperatures for superelastic grades are between -20°C and 22°C [-4°F and 71.6°F].
Shape memory Nitinol is commonly used for actuators and other industrial applications. Transformation temperatures for shape memory grades are between 22°C and 80°C [71.6°F and 176°F], with some grades offering temperatures greater than 85°C [185°F].
In addition to producing Fort Wayne Metals-melted Nitinol, we use material from other leading Nitinol suppliers. We then apply our advanced processing capabilities to manufacture precision wire-based products.
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Determining which grade of Nitinol is right for your application is only part of the equation. If you need Nitinol as basic round wire, that's exactly what you'll get, but there are many more options to maximize device design.
Melting high quality raw materials carefully combined in a precision melting process
Round wire 0.02 mm to 1.7 mm [0.0005 in to 0.067 in] depending on surface finish
Custom shapes in a wide variety of shaped cross-sectional wire
DFT® composites manufactured with a Nitinol core or tube sheath
HHS® tube with an open center working channel
Shape setting Nitinol wire to return to a set shape at transformation temperature
We offer a variety of surface finishes so you can tailor our Nitinol to your exact needs.
Light oxide diamond drawn surface
Dark oxide diamond drawn surface
Etched chemical removal of oxide layer - will maintain smooth surface
Pickled chemical removal of oxide layer along with a slight amount of base metal - surface will have a rough texture
Etched and mechanically polished chemical removal of oxide layer followed by mechanical polish - surface will have stainless steel appearance although at > 40x magnification micro scratches are present
Because Nitinol has such unique material properties, we’ve developed a range of products to support our customers’ needs. From ultra-smooth oxide free Silk® Nitinol, to ultra-stiff USN® wire, and hardworking actuator wire, you’ll find all kinds of material solutions for your applications, right here.
Contact us so we can help you find the right Nitinol for your application.