By Gina Evangelidis
In the event that you are bored of the periodic table – unlikely, I know – Bodycote have published a brilliantly fun fictional edition on their website. It showcases elements from mythology such as: Adamantine – used in the sword that killed Medusa; Dalekanium – Doctor Who fans unite!, and Valyrian steel, the mystical metal that the MMTA team has taken a special liking to.
Valyrian steel is famously used in George R R Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series – or, as most will know it, Game of Thrones. The author described Valyrian steel as a fantasy metal with magical characteristics. A Valyrian steel sword, said to be forged with dragon fire, is of unparalleled quality; it will never dull and can even defeat white walkers – the living dead!
There are clear parallels between Valyrian steel and Damascan steel: Damascan steel swords were extraordinary in their time, have not been successfully replicated in recent years and they, like Valyrian steel swords, have naturally occurring rippled patterns. Valyrian steel may be a fictional masterpiece, but it is a masterpiece inspired by a very real material.