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Forge ahead and put your materials science knowledge to the fire in a fun new competition debuting at the TMS 2015 Annual Meeting & Exhibition in Orlando, Florida, March 15-19.
Register by December 15, 2014!
The Rules:
  • Produce a knife or sword blade 20-120 cm long (including handle)
  • Blades must be formed extensively by hand hammering or trip hammer forging
  • Blades may be of any material and can be smoothed/polished/sharpened by mechanical means
  • Contest is open to university teams and artisans/enthusiasts
  • Entries must include a video showing the creative process, characterization report, and poster
The Prizes:
Prizes will be awarded in two categories: "University Students" and "Artisans and Enthusiasts"
1st place . . . . . $1,000
2nd place . . . . . $500
3rd place . . . . . $250
Honorable mention(s) $100
Additional Details:
  • Student participants:
  • Entries may be submitted by individuals or teams.
  • University teams may also include one (1) non-student artisan and two (2) advanced-placement high school students, but at least half of each team’s members must be university students.
  • Recent engineering graduates who received their degree following the 2014 Annual Meeting will be considered students for this year’s contest.
  • Artisan participants:
  • Entries may be submitted by individuals or teams.
  • Each team is limited to one sword.
  • Videos should not exceed 15 minutes.
  • There is no restriction on the starting material for the blades. Teams may use: purchased stock material; material that is alloyed, laminated, or otherwise processed by the team; or material smelted from ore. (An additional $500 may be awarded to the team who best produces a blade from ore or most closely demonstrates a historic blade’s reproduction.)
Judging/Scoring Criteria
University Students:
  • Blade (25%) (quality, aesthetics)
  • Video showing bladesmithing process (25%)
  • Blade characterization report (25%) Includes metallography, hardness, flexibility, edge, ease of/need for re-sharpening. Teams must provide original documentation showing the blade microstructure produced and the thermochemical processes employed. This may be satisfied by metallographic analysis of 1) excess material taken from the rough-formed blade or 2) from similarly team-processed material.
  • Poster (25%)
Artisans and Enthusiasts:
  • Blade (30%)
  • Video showing bladesmithing process (30%)
  • Blade characterization report (30%) Includes metallography, hardness, flexibility, edge, ease of/need for re-sharpening. Teams must provide original documentation showing the blade microstructure produced and the thermochemical processes employed. This may be satisfied by metallographic analysis of 1) excess material taken from the rough-formed blade or 2) from similarly team-processed material.
  • Poster (10 %)


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