Christopher Moore, Georgia Tech
Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Stanford, and Purdue University have built a ceramic mechanical pump that can move liquid metal as hot as 1,673K (that is, about 1,400 degrees Celsius). Usually, the temperature of liquid metals that you can pump tends to cap out at 1,300K (1,027 degrees Celsius) because there are few pump-building materials that will stay solid and chemically stable beyond that.
Those materials that exist tend to crack or break quickly under the stress of such heat.
But this new pump, made of carefully engineered ceramic, could be good news for concentrated solar power, as well as accompanying thermal energy storage.
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