Superelasticity is the ability of Nickel-Titanium alloys of recovering large deformations up to 8% after unloading. For example, here we have a 3D object forming the superelasticity word. When presure applies on one side, while keeping the bottom as a fixed support, the object gets a large and temporary deformation. No problem at all as the material is working inside the elastic zone. Once pressure ends, these 3D letters get back to their initial shape, finishing the superelastic cycle.
Unlike shape memory letters, which maintain deformation after unloading (waiting for some heat to release the memory effect), these recover the shape after load finishes, without the need for a heat source. Due to the higher percentage of Nickel in this superelastic alloy than in those shape memory letters, the transformation temperature value of the superelastic alloy is lower and therefore, at room temperature, usually this value is always reached and the alloy is in austenite state. Deformations occur at the austenite stage, causing what is called “induced martensite”.
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