Photo and Commentary ©2020 by Russell Jurgensen
Thursday, May 28, 2020

If you are like me you might wonder what makes the hardest metals. These used turbine engine blades were procured around 2002 just before the Concorde super-sonic airliners were retired. If the eBay listing and certificate are to be believed, they are from a Concorde Rolls-Royce Olympus 593 jet engine. At about eight inches long, the material is probably titanium or a nickel/titanium alloy.

A surprising amount of research goes into making metal alloys that can withstand the heat of turbine engines. Alloys that perform the best under intense flame are nickel-based to get the right kind of structure that resists regular grain patterns. I don’t understand it, but it has something to do with the way the atoms pack together so they hold on to each other without sliding around.

It reminds me of advice in the Bible that maybe we should firm up things in our own lives.

You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. Revelation 3:17

Maybe when I think I am a hardened metal, like a typical bolt in a hardware store, I really wouldn’t stand up well under heat. I should look to the Lord for guidance and study his word for true strength that comes from thoughtful counsel that is carefully designed.