Nitinol was developed by the Naval Ordnance Laboratory. The name comes from its composition and the discovery team who first recognized the potential of this powerful alloy (NIckel/TItanium/Naval Ordinance Laboratory).
Nitinol alloys are typically made of 55%-56% Nickel and 44%-45% Titanium. Small changes in composition can significantly impact the properties of the material. There are two primary categories of Nitinol. The first, known as "SuperElastic", is characterized by extraordinary recoverable strains and kink resistance. The second category, "Shape Memory" alloys, is valued for the Nitinol's capacity to recover a pre-set shape when heated above its transformation temperature. The first category is often used for orthodontics (braces, wires, etc) and eyeglasses. Dynalloy® makes shape memory alloys, which are primarily useful for actuators, used in many diffrent mechanical devices.
Dynalloy manufactures a variety of NiTi based alloys, include Flexinol® actutor wires, and As Drawn shape memory Niti wires having transition temperatures around 80C - 90C.