Researchers from Boise State University in Idaho and Northwestern University in Illinois say a new material they’ve developed, called “magnetic shape-memory foam,” could help auto makers developer lighter, lower-cost vehicles. The foam consists of a nickel-manganese-gallium alloy and is designed to be porous, making it both resilient and lightweight. The alloy can remember its shape even after it has been put under strain. Because the foam changes shape when exposed to a magnetic field, ...

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