When you are looking at what is direct material there are a number of things to consider. One is the material cost per unit. This is an easy way to compare different materials and their relative costs. Other things that you should consider are the amount of energy required for manufacturing various materials and their environmental impact. Materials also come in different shapes, sizes and properties. Let’s look at these and other factors that affect what is direct material.
Direct materials prices refer to the actual cost of materials that are easily identifiable with the individual unit of manufacturing. For instance, the price of glass is an example of what is direct material in terms of price per unit. A product made from this material is going to have a high price. This is true whether manufacturing the glass in China or the US. The same goes for other commodities like oil, coal and wheat.
In terms of energy consumption what is direct material is not directly related to energy consumption, but there are materials that make it more efficient. Take glass for example. It is one of the most heat-efficient substances in the world. Glass can store energy and make rooms cooler during summer when windows become hot.
The same is true of metal. It has very low energy consumption when new it is formed. Metal can be molded into all kinds of shapes and structures. Some of the structures that use this are houses, cars, chairs and industrial equipment.
So what is direct material? It’s a term that identifies an item that is created using the least energy when manufactured. It can be an aluminum can or a wooden board. It refers to a material that doesn’t have to be fired at high temperatures like metals or steels do. You won’t see melt down steel buildings with wood beams. But you will see buildings made of low density timber where the walls are so thin you can easily break them with a hammer.
This is also why there is no need to use as much steel as what is required for aircraft. The energy that is needed to form the structure is more than enough to power turbines powered by solar or wind energy. In fact many think we can run our entire civilization on solar and wind power. In many places windmills are being used to generate electricity instead of traditional power plants.
When looking at what is direct material, it is often found in products that require cooling. Many metals and glasses use a slow cooling rate. This helps to protect them from damage due to high temperature changes. If you have ever had a piece of glass break while cleaning a computer case then you would know what I’m talking about.
Glass is one example of what is direct material. Glass also has a very unique ability to have its temperature cycle regulate. Hot glass can have its temperature increased and cooled. Cold glass will be harder to handle but will retain its temperature well. This means you don’t have to worry about shattering windows and injuring yourself as you clean with extreme temperatures. In this way glass offers many benefits but also a lot of safety.
Another example of what is direct material is heat engineering. Heat engineering is the study of how to cool air using heat to produce a controlled flow of air. The cool air is often directed at a special structure which uses high pressure and high temperatures to force the air into a closed structure. Once inside the structure the air is cool and ready to be reused. This can be used for heat recovery, generation of electricity and even cooling water.
Computers and many other electronic devices also use what is direct material. They use conductive materials such as transistors and capacitors. The electrical charge on the transistors is changed by the movement of the atoms and electrons in the cells. This transfer of energy produces an electric current which ultimately powers the computer. The general term for all this is electronic conductors.
There are many other applications of what is direct material. In particular they are widely used in aerospace to reduce weight and make for easier handling. In the medical field they are used to create artificial hearts. Although this may sound far fetched, the reality is that what is direct material is used all over the world for its myriad benefits and low cost.