Expanded metal has been widely used around the world. This paper is aimed at presenting latest advances in the use of expanded metal in engineering. Currently, expanded metal is mainly used in the construction industry as furniture, fences or protection purposes. Hundreds of patents can be found in the literature regarding possible applications for expanded metal. These applications fall into four main areas: furniture, construction, biomechanics, and energy absorption systems. When expanding the metal, the material undergoes slits and stretching modifying the mechanical properties of the base metal, hence enhancing the material strength. Additionally, there is a reduction of the weight per unit of area, which is an asset when designing lightweight structures. Waste material from the manufacturing process is almost none, since the base metal is cut and stretched to the final form. Recently, expanded metal sheets are used in architecture to create modern, efficient and elegant buildings that are also energy-efficient, open and transparent. The relevant patents on expanded metals are discussed.
Universidad Simon Bolivar, Departamento de Mecanica, Apdo. 89000. Caracas 1080-A, Venezuela.