Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"Retire? Yeah, I want to die with my head in the typewriter. That's my idea of retirement."
- Alfred Bester

Steelonium  
  A remarkable kind of steel that did not rust or corrode.  

This is a very early reference in fiction to what is now called stainless steel.

"You will notice that there are no cracks or fissures. Steelonium won't rust and is ten times as strong as steel. We now make our streets by putting down large slabs of the metal, six inches thick."
From Ralph 124c 41 +, by Hugo Gernsback.
Published by Modern Electrics in 1911
Additional resources -

The invention of stainless steel is most often attributed to Harry Bearly, an English inventor, in 1916. Bearly was asked to try to find a steel for gun barrels that would be less subject to corrosion. He found that adding chromium to low carbon steel enhanced its corrosion resistance. Stainless steel flatware has been used since 1920; it wasn't widely used in homes until a decade later. Stainless steel sinks were popular in the 1930's. See also the interesting comment by reader Daedelus.

Stainless steel literally "stains less" because the chromium in the steel combines with oxygen in the atmosphere to form a thin, invisible layer of chrome-containing oxide, called the passive film. (The same thing happens with aluminum railings, etc.; aluminum oxide, the passive film on the surface of the metal, is completely clear and very strong.) The sizes of chromium atoms and their oxides are similar, so they pack neatly together on the surface of the metal, forming a stable layer only a few atoms thick. The corrosion resistance of stainless steel is dependent on oxygen to "repair" the passive layer on the surface; that's why if you leave stainless steel flatware in water for a few days, you can still get some corrosion (rust) on the surface of the flatware. There is a nice article on this subject at Why is stainless steel stainless.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 3 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Ralph 124c 41 +
  More Ideas and Technology by Hugo Gernsback
  Tech news articles related to Ralph 124c 41 +
  Tech news articles related to works by Hugo Gernsback

Articles related to Material
'Metallic Wood' Strong Like Titanium, Floats In Water
Self-Healing Material Pulls Carbon Out Of The Air
Shapeshifting Materials Transform By Light
Superstrong Multilayer Metal-Graphene Composite Material

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Humanoid Robot's Muscles Biomimic Ours
'It is remarkable that the long leverages of their machines are in most cases actuated by a sort of sham musculature...'

Animatronic Robotic Baby Exposed
'The birth of Machine, my robot child...'

Beijing HaiDiLao Robotic Hotpot Restaurant Now Flavored By Artificial Intelligence
'Kantos Kan led me to one of these gorgeous eating places where we were served entirely by mechanical apparatus.'

Plants of the Future - What Should They Be Like
'He almost choked in his astonishment. Mashed potatoes and brown gravy!'

China Deploys Robot Traffic Police
'The robot came up smooth and fast as a rocket...'

Better Than Dune Chromoplastic? This Guy Might Have Done It
'But when Old Father Sun departs, the chromoplastic reverts to transparency in the dark.'

Gather, An AI Warehouse Inventory Drone Startup
'It extended three of its tiny arms sideways to lock onto the registration pins...'

China's Artificial Intelligence-Enhanced Education
'The grey gas not only cut off his vision, but also his other senses...'

Orbital Manufacturer 'Made in Space' Gets $73 Million NASA Contract
'Mass-produced in the orbiting factories...'

Soli Gesture Tech Will Be In Google Pixel 4
'I enjoy watching this way, but - He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.