New shape memory alloy for high transformation temperature


The main disadvantage of standard Nickel-Titanium Shape Memory Alloy for space mechanisms is the limited transformation temperature. In contrast the new CN-250X Nimesis alloy offered here is a Cu-Al-Ni single crystal wire with high transformation temperature (up to 250°C). It is available in large quantities for industrial application with acceptable cost. It comes in standard form or can be customized for specific applications.


Shape memory alloys (SMA) are recognized as reliable and e¬fficient materials that can be used particularly to design actuators or customized systems. The major drawback of these shape memory actuators is the trigger temperature which is lower than 100°C with standard NiTi alloys.

The new Cu-Al-Ni single crystal wire described here exhibits a transformation temperature higher than 100°C. Indeed the state of the art and detailed characterization work undertaken for a recent space program has demonstrated that Cu-Al-Ni single crystal wire is a very good candidate for space / non-space applications which need trigger temperatures between 100°C and 250°C.

The company can now provide standard product (wires), actuators and customized system in industrial quantities.  The Cu-Al-Ni single crystal wire is available in round section with a diameter from 0.5 mm to 20 mm.

Innovations and advantages of the offer

The company offers the ability to be able to design new functions based on different characteristics of SMA specific to particular applications, using a model simulation of the SMA. Additionally, the company has developed specific tools to manufacture dedicated products.

Cu-Al-Ni single crystal wire can be designed to give a trigger temperature ranging from -100°C to 200°C in cycling mode, and up to 250°C in one-shot mode.

Another advantage of CN-250X is a better shape recovery (8 to 10%) than NiTi (6 to 7%).

It is the subject of a current patent.

Further Information

CN-250X advantages:

  • High transformation temperature
  • High shape recovery
  • Reproducibility
  • Reliability
  • Future sustainability
  • Easy to integrate
  • Weight and volume reduction
  • Active / passive system
  • Very high quality


The products may be used in many industrial sectors, up to 200°C.:

  • Communications
  • Computer related
  • Other electronics related
  • Genetic engineering/molecular biology
  • Medical/Health related
  • Energy
  • Consumer related
  • Industrial products
  • Other

The SMA can be used as a sensor, an actuator or even both at the same time.

CN-250X potential applications:

  • High temperature Shape memory actuators
  • Non-explosive actuators
  • Non-explosive release mechanisms
  • Safety devices
  • Shape memory sleeves – connectors
  • Locking – unlocking devices
  • Deployment systems
  • Clamping systems
  • Damping devices
  • Medical devices

All kind of high temperature actuators and customized systems can be designed and integrated with thermal triggering

Comments on the technology by the broker

  • Latest generation technology
  • Large field of applications in strong high temperature environment (up to 250°C)
  • Very good company integrating R&D development and standard production
  • From raw materials to finished products

Description of Space Heritage

The company has worked with several space companies to develop new space applications with adapted shape memory alloys. The SMA exploitation in space field keeps on developing.

An example space application is the Frangibolt device: this system is used in order to replace the pyrotechnic uncoupling during satellite deployment in orbit.

The SMA piece is warmed up, which leads to it reverting back to the initial form and exerts a pressure on the screw that breaks, causing the unit to separate.

Mechanical Components
Reference No.
Could this technology benefit your business? Please contact Jean-Paul Henry Créaction (Luxembourg)
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