Hot isostatic processing (HIP) is a rapidly expanding manufacturing process which involves treating parts at very high temperatures in an inert gas at very high pressures. HIP-treated parts display dramatic improvements in strength, fatigue resistance, and other important characteristics.Components of aircraft turbine engines, high-speed tool steels, cemented carbides, carbon/carbon composites, titanium, and super-alloys are all commonly HIP'ed today. Castings' characteristics are improved by HIP'ing.HIP's potential value to the automotive industry lies in weight reduction, reliability, safety, and conservation of energy and scarce materials. Smaller, stronger, lighter engine blocks, for example, are a distinct possibility with HIP. HIP/PM gear blanks requiring minimal machining are another possibility.The relatively high cost of HIP has been the principal impediment to its widespread commercialization. With larger capacity systems the economics of HIP are now in the range of interest to the automotive industry.