Design and Technology requires a good understanding of both materials and processing. This area has resources that will to help achieve this understanding, including materials information, a process encyclopaedia, interactive material selection charts, case studies in product analysis and more...
A package of multimedia resources for teaching many of the concepts has been developed with the support of the Technology Enhancement Programme. This package is mainly aimed at A level Design and Technology, but could also find application for GCSE D&T, GNVQ Manufacturing and International Baccalaureate.
A tutorial has been written which includes an introduction to product analysis, an overview of material selection charts and some information on process selection. We recommend reading the tutorial, in order to understand the concepts involved, before attempting to use any of the selection resources below.
Detailed information for over 40 materials found in commonly used products.
Interactive material selection charts which show material properties in a visually intuitive manner. They allow selection of suitable materials as well as providing a rapid comparison of properties between different materials.
A list of 10 material properties containing details on what they are, how they are used, how they are measured and some typical values (shown on a bar chart for material classes).
A process encyclopedia containing details on how processes work as well as useful selection information such as possible materials, shapes, economics etc.
an example in product analysis using the 13A plug and mains cable.
We recommend using the above resources for information as far as possible. However, the following external links in the above categories may also be useful.
The Science Museum have a WWW site on the Challenge of Materials.
A large database of material properties for where the information is not on the charts above.
A brief overview of many material properties.
The process encyclopaedia contains external links for many individual processes.