Inconel

Inconel Rocket Engine

Photo Credit: SpaceX

What is Inconel®?

When you encounter extreme environments, especially those involving high heat, pressure, thermal shock, corrosion (especially salt water) – you turn to Inconel, a family of nickel and chromium-based superalloys. Although costly, Inconel retains its strength impressively over a wide range of temperatures. Even compared to stainless steel, Inconel® has an incredibly high tolerance for extreme heat and doesn’t lose as much tensile strength at 2,000° F as most varieties of steel.

So, aside from the NERO 556 muzzle brake, where else is Inconel found?

Examples of Inconel Usage
The most common example of where Inconel is used would have to be jet engines. Needing to withstand extreme temperatures and temperature swings frequently, jet engines and Inconel are a perfect match. Beyond jets, we also see Inconel used in spacecraft, specifically rocket engines. Here are some specific use cases:

  • SpaceX’s Merlin rocket engine & SuperDraco rocket engine
  • North American Avation’s X-15, a rocket-powered hypersonic aircraft
  • F-1 Rocket Engine of the Saturn V

What about within the Firearm's Industry?
Due to its cost, the use of Inconel may be less common in the firearms industry, but it's not unheard of. Some specific examples are in order:

  • Daniel Defense’s DD Wave Suppressor (3D Printed)
  • Delta P’s BREVIS II (3D Printed)
  • Surefire SOCOM 300 SPS
  • Knight’s Armament Triple Tap Muzzle Brake
  • V Seven’s Extreme Environment Gas Tubes

Sources & Disclosure
Inconel® is a registered trademark of Special Metals Corporation. Walker Defense Research LLC is not affiliated with or endorsed by any of the above-mentioned companies. The information above is provided as a gathering of publicly-available information.

Sources are as follows:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inconel
http://www.spacex.com/press/2014/05/27/spacex-completes-qualification-testing-superdraco-thruster
http://www.operationparts.com/kac-knights-armament-sr15-pdw-triple-tap-muzzle-brake-inconel/
https://www.vsevenweaponsystems.com/v7-extreme-environment-gas-tube/
https://www.silencershop.com/surefire-genesis-762.html
https://www.ferralloy.com/inconel-benefits-uses/
http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2015/11/jeremy-s/delta-p-3d-printed-suppressors/