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Surface Mechanical Attrition Treatment (SMAT) of 7075 Aluminum Alloy to Induce a Protective Corrosion Resistant Layer

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This paper investigates Surface Mechanical Attrition Treatment (SMAT) and the influence of treatment temperature and initial sample surface finish on the corrosion resistance of 7075-T651 aluminum alloy. Ambient SMAT was performed on AA7075 samples polished to 80-grit initial surface roughness.

This paper investigates Surface Mechanical Attrition Treatment (SMAT) and the influence of treatment temperature and initial sample surface finish on the corrosion resistance of 7075-T651 aluminum alloy. Ambient SMAT was performed on AA7075 samples polished to 80-grit initial surface roughness. Potentiodynamic polarization and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) tests were used to characterize the corrosion behavior of samples before and after SMAT. Electrochemical tests indicated an improved corrosion resistance after application of SMAT process. The observed improvements in corrosion properties are potentially due to microstructural changes in the material surface induced by SMAT which encouraged the formation of a passive oxide layer. Further testing and research are required to understand the corrosion related effects of cryogenic SMAT and initial-surface finish as the COVID-19 pandemic inhibited experimentation plans.

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2020-05

A Study of the Mechanical Behavior Of Nanocrystalline Metals Using Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS)

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The study of the mechanical behavior of nanocrystalline metals using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) devices lies at the intersection of nanotechnology, mechanical engineering and material science. The extremely small grains that make up nanocrystalline metals lead to higher strength but lower

The study of the mechanical behavior of nanocrystalline metals using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) devices lies at the intersection of nanotechnology, mechanical engineering and material science. The extremely small grains that make up nanocrystalline metals lead to higher strength but lower ductility as compared to bulk metals. Effects of strain-rate dependence on the mechanical behavior of nanocrystalline metals are explored. Knowing the strain rate dependence of mechanical properties would enable optimization of material selection for different applications and lead to lighter structural components and enhanced sustainability.

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2014-05

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Role of impurities on deformation of HCP crystal: a multiscale approach

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Commercially pure (CP) and extra low interstitial (ELI) grade Ti-alloys present excellent corrosion resistance, lightweight, and formability making them attractive materials for expanded use in transportation and medical applications. However, the strength and toughness of CP titanium are affected by

Commercially pure (CP) and extra low interstitial (ELI) grade Ti-alloys present excellent corrosion resistance, lightweight, and formability making them attractive materials for expanded use in transportation and medical applications. However, the strength and toughness of CP titanium are affected by relatively small variations in their impurity/solute content (IC), e.g., O, Al, and V. This increase in strength is due to the fact that the solute either increases the critical stress required for the prismatic slip systems ({10-10}<1-210>) or activates another slip system ((0001)<11-20>, {10-11}<11-20>). In particular, solute additions such as O can effectively strengthen the alloy but with an attendant loss in ductility by changing the behavior from wavy (cross slip) to planar nature. In order to understand the underlying behavior of strengthening by solutes, it is important to understand the atomic scale mechanism. This dissertation aims to address this knowledge gap through a synergistic combination of density functional theory (DFT) and molecular dynamics. Further, due to the long-range strain fields of the dislocations and the periodicity of the DFT simulation cells, it is difficult to apply ab initio simulations to study the dislocation core structure. To alleviate this issue we developed a multiscale quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics approach (QM/MM) to study the dislocation core. We use the developed QM/MM method to study the pipe diffusion along a prismatic edge dislocation core. Complementary to the atomistic simulations, the Semi-discrete Variational Peierls-Nabarro model (SVPN) was also used to analyze the dislocation core structure and mobility. The chemical interaction between the solute/impurity and the dislocation core is captured by the so-called generalized stacking fault energy (GSFE) surface which was determined from DFT-VASP calculations. By taking the chemical interaction into consideration the SVPN model can predict the dislocation core structure and mobility in the presence and absence of the solute/impurity and thus reveal the effect of impurity/solute on the softening/hardening behavior in alpha-Ti. Finally, to study the interaction of the dislocation core with other planar defects such as grain boundaries (GB), we develop an automated method to theoretically generate GBs in HCP type materials.

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2014

An experimental investigation of capillary driven flow in open rectangular channels: a method to create PDMS microfilaments for pN scale force measurements

Description

The flow of liquid PDMS (10:1 v/v base to cross-linker ratio) in open, rectangular silicon micro channels, with and without a hexa-methyl-di-silazane (HMDS) or poly-tetra-fluoro-ethylene (PTFE) (120 nm) coat, was studied. Photolithographic patterning and etching of silicon wafers was used

The flow of liquid PDMS (10:1 v/v base to cross-linker ratio) in open, rectangular silicon micro channels, with and without a hexa-methyl-di-silazane (HMDS) or poly-tetra-fluoro-ethylene (PTFE) (120 nm) coat, was studied. Photolithographic patterning and etching of silicon wafers was used to create micro channels with a range of widths (5-50 μm) and depths (5-20 μm). The experimental PDMS flow rates were compared to an analytical model based on the work of Lucas and Washburn. The experimental flow rates closely matched the predicted flow rates for channels with an aspect ratio (width to depth), p, between one and two. Flow rates in channels with p less than one were higher than predicted whereas the opposite was true for channels with p greater than two. The divergence between the experimental and predicted flow rates steadily increased with increasing p. These findings are rationalized in terms of the effect of channel dimensions on the front and top meniscus morphology and the possible deviation from the no-slip condition at the channel walls at high shear rates.

In addition, a preliminary experimental setup for calibration tests on ultrasensitive PDMS cantilever beams is reported. One loading and unloading cycle is completed on a microcantilever PDMS beam (theoretical stiffness 0.5 pN/ µm). Beam deflections are actuated by adjusting the buoyancy force on the beam, which is submerged in water, by the addition of heat. The expected loading and unloading curve is produced, albeit with significant noise. The experimental results indicate that the beam stiffness is a factor of six larger than predicted theoretically. One probable explanation is that the beam geometry may change when it is removed from the channel after curing, making assumptions about the beam geometry used in the theoretical analysis inaccurate. This theory is bolstered by experimental data discussed in the report. Other sources of error which could partially contribute to the divergent results are discussed. Improvements to the experimental setup for future work are suggested.

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2014

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An evaluation of the mechanical properties and microstructure in uranium dioxide doped with oxide additives

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The United States Department of Energy (DOE) has always held the safety and reliability of the nation's nuclear reactor fleet as a top priority. Continual improvements and advancements in nuclear fuels have been instrumental in maximizing energy generation from nuclear

The United States Department of Energy (DOE) has always held the safety and reliability of the nation's nuclear reactor fleet as a top priority. Continual improvements and advancements in nuclear fuels have been instrumental in maximizing energy generation from nuclear power plants and minimizing waste. One aspect of the DOE Fuel Cycle Research and Development Advanced Fuels Campaign is to improve the mechanical properties of uranium dioxide (UO2) for nuclear fuel applications.

In an effort to improve the performance of UO2, by increasing the fracture toughness and ductility, small quantities of oxide materials have been added to samples to act as dopants. The different dopants used in this study are: titanium dioxide, yttrium oxide, aluminum oxide, silicon dioxide, and chromium oxide. The effects of the individual dopants and some dopant combinations on the microstructure and mechanical properties are determined using indentation fracture experiments in tandem with scanning electron microscopy. Indentation fracture experiments are carried out at room temperature and at temperatures between 450 °C and 1160 °C.

The results of this work find that doping with aluminosilicate produces the largest favorable change in the mechanical properties of UO2. This sample exhibits an increase in fracture toughness at room temperature without showing a change in yield strength at elevated temperatures. The results also show that doping with Al2O3 and TiO2 produce stronger samples and it is hypothesized that this is a result of the sample containing dopant-rich secondary phase particles.

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2014

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Study on buckling of stiff thin films on soft substrates as functional materials

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In engineering, buckling is mechanical instability of walls or columns under compression and usually is a problem that engineers try to prevent. In everyday life buckles (wrinkles) on different substrates are ubiquitous -- from human skin to a rotten apple

In engineering, buckling is mechanical instability of walls or columns under compression and usually is a problem that engineers try to prevent. In everyday life buckles (wrinkles) on different substrates are ubiquitous -- from human skin to a rotten apple they are a commonly observed phenomenon. It seems that buckles with macroscopic wavelengths are not technologically useful; over the past decade or so, however, thanks to the widespread availability of soft polymers and silicone materials micro-buckles with wavelengths in submicron to micron scale have received increasing attention because it is useful for generating well-ordered periodic microstructures spontaneously without conventional lithographic techniques. This thesis investigates the buckling behavior of thin stiff films on soft polymeric substrates and explores a variety of applications, ranging from optical gratings, optical masks, energy harvest to energy storage. A laser scanning technique is proposed to detect micro-strain induced by thermomechanical loads and a periodic buckling microstructure is employed as a diffraction grating with broad wavelength tunability, which is spontaneously generated from a metallic thin film on polymer substrates. A mechanical strategy is also presented for quantitatively buckling nanoribbons of piezoelectric material on polymer substrates involving the combined use of lithographically patterning surface adhesion sites and transfer printing technique. The precisely engineered buckling configurations provide a route to energy harvesters with extremely high levels of stretchability. This stiff-thin-film/polymer hybrid structure is further employed into electrochemical field to circumvent the electrochemically-driven stress issue in silicon-anode-based lithium ion batteries. It shows that the initial flat silicon-nanoribbon-anode on a polymer substrate tends to buckle to mitigate the lithiation-induced stress so as to avoid the pulverization of silicon anode. Spontaneously generated submicron buckles of film/polymer are also used as an optical mask to produce submicron periodic patterns with large filling ratio in contrast to generating only ~100 nm edge submicron patterns in conventional near-field soft contact photolithography. This thesis aims to deepen understanding of buckling behavior of thin films on compliant substrates and, in turn, to harness the fundamental properties of such instability for diverse applications.

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2014

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Multiscale Modeling of Structure-Property Relationships in Polymers with Heterogenous Structure

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The exceptional mechanical properties of polymers with heterogeneous structure, such as the high toughness of polyethylene and the excellent blast-protection capability of polyurea, are strongly related to their morphology and nanoscale structure. Different polymer microstructures, such as semicrystalline morphology

The exceptional mechanical properties of polymers with heterogeneous structure, such as the high toughness of polyethylene and the excellent blast-protection capability of polyurea, are strongly related to their morphology and nanoscale structure. Different polymer microstructures, such as semicrystalline morphology and segregated nanophases, lead to coordinated molecular motions during deformation in order to preserve compatibility between the different material phases. To study molecular relaxation in polyethylene, a coarse-grained model of polyethylene was calibrated to match the local structural variable distributions sampled from supercooled atomistic melts. The coarse-grained model accurately reproduces structural properties, e.g., the local structure of both the amorphous and crystalline phases, and thermal properties, e.g., glass transition and melt temperatures, and dynamic properties: including the vastly different relaxation time scales of the amorphous and crystalline phases. A hybrid Monte Carlo routine was developed to generate realistic semicrystalline configurations of polyethylene. The generated systems accurately predict the activation energy of the alpha relaxation process within the crystalline phase. Furthermore, the models show that connectivity to long chain segments in the amorphous phase increases the energy barrier for chain slip within crystalline phase. This prediction can guide the development of tougher semicrystalline polymers by providing a fundamental understanding of how nanoscale morphology contributes to chain mobility. In a different study, the macroscopic shock response of polyurea, a phase segregated copolymer, was analyzed using density functional theory (DFT) molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and classical MD simulations. The two models predict the shock response consistently up to shock pressures of 15 GPa, beyond which the DFT-based simulations predict a softer response. From the DFT simulations, an analysis of bond scission was performed as a first step in developing a more fundamental understanding of how shock induced material transformations effect the shock response and pressure dependent strength of polyurea subjected to extreme shocks.

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2017

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Multiscale Modeling of Oxygen Impurity Effects on Macroscopic Deformation and Fatigue Behavior of Commercially Pure Titanium

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Interstitial impurity atoms can significantly alter the chemical and physical properties of the host material. Oxygen impurity in HCP titanium is known to have a considerable strengthening effect mainly through interactions with dislocations. To better understand such an effect, first

Interstitial impurity atoms can significantly alter the chemical and physical properties of the host material. Oxygen impurity in HCP titanium is known to have a considerable strengthening effect mainly through interactions with dislocations. To better understand such an effect, first the role of oxygen on various slip planes in titanium is examined using generalized stacking fault energies (GSFE) computed by the first principles calculations. It is shown that oxygen can significantly increase the energy barrier to dislocation motion on most of the studied slip planes. Then the Peierls-Nabbaro model is utilized in conjunction with the GSFE to estimate the Peierls stress ratios for different slip systems. Using such information along with a set of tension and compression experiments, the parameters of a continuum scale crystal plasticity model, namely CRSS values, are calibrated. Effect of oxygen content on the macroscopic stress-strain response is further investigated through experiments on oxygen-boosted samples at room temperature. It is demonstrated that the crystal plasticity model can very well capture the effect of oxygen content on the global response of the samples. It is also revealed that oxygen promotes the slip activity on the pyramidal planes.

The effect of oxygen impurity on titanium is further investigated under high cycle fatigue loading. For that purpose, a two-step hierarchical crystal plasticity for fatigue predictions is presented. Fatigue indicator parameter is used as the main driving force in an energy-based crack nucleation model. To calculate the FIPs, high-resolution full-field crystal plasticity simulations are carried out using a spectral solver. A nucleation model is proposed and calibrated by the fatigue experimental data for notched titanium samples with different oxygen contents and under two load ratios. Overall, it is shown that the presented approach is capable of predicting the high cycle fatigue nucleation time. Moreover, qualitative predictions of microstructurally small crack growth rates are provided. The multi-scale methodology presented here can be extended to other material systems to facilitate a better understanding of the fundamental deformation mechanisms, and to effectively implement such knowledge in mesoscale-macroscale investigations.

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2018

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Characterization of the Dynamic Strength of Aluminium at Extreme Strain Rates and Pressures

Description

The study of response of various materials to intense dynamic loading events,

such as shock loading due to high-velocity impacts, is extremely important in a wide

variety of military and industrial applications. Shock loading triggers extreme states,

leading to high pressures and strain

The study of response of various materials to intense dynamic loading events,

such as shock loading due to high-velocity impacts, is extremely important in a wide

variety of military and industrial applications. Shock loading triggers extreme states,

leading to high pressures and strain rates, and neglecting strength is a typical

approximation under such conditions. However, recent results have shown that strength

effects are larger than expected, so they must be taken into account. Recently,

hydrodynamic instabilities, the most common being the Rayleigh-Taylor (RTI) and

Richtmyer-Meshkov (RMI) instabilities, have been used to infer the dynamic strength of

materials at high pressure conditions. In our experiments and simulations, a novel RMI

approach is used, in which periodic surface perturbations are made on high purity

aluminium target, which was laser ablated to create a rippled shock front. Due to the

slow linear growth rate of RMI, the evolution of the perturbations on the back surface of

the sample as a result of the rippled shock can be measured via Transient Imaging

Displacement Interferometry (TIDI). The velocity history at the free surface was

recorded by spatially resolved laser velocimetry. These measurements were compared

with the results from the simulations, which were implemented using rate independent

and rate dependent material models, to characterize the dynamic strength of the

material. Simulations using the elastic-perfectly plastic model, which is rate

independent, failed to provide a value of dynamic yield strength that would match

experimental measurements of perturbation amplitudes. The Preston-Tonks-Wallace

(PTW) model, which is rate dependent model, worked well for aluminium. This model

was, in turn, used as a reference for calibrating the rate dependent Steinberg-Lund

model and the results from simulations using the calibration models were also compared

to experimental measurements.

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2017

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Finite element analysis of micro-cantilever beam experiments in UO2

Description

Uranium Dioxide (UO2) is a significant nuclear fission fuel, which is widely used

in nuclear reactors. Understanding the influence of microstructure on thermo-mechanical behavior of UO2 is extremely important to predict its performance. In particular, evaluating mechanical properties, such as elasticity,

Uranium Dioxide (UO2) is a significant nuclear fission fuel, which is widely used

in nuclear reactors. Understanding the influence of microstructure on thermo-mechanical behavior of UO2 is extremely important to predict its performance. In particular, evaluating mechanical properties, such as elasticity, plasticity and creep at sub-grain length scales is key to developing this understanding as well as building multi-scale models of fuel behavior with predicting capabilities. In this work, modeling techniques were developed to study effects of microstructure on Young’s modulus, which was selected as a key representative property that affects overall mechanical behavior, using experimental data obtained from micro-cantilever bending testing as benchmarks. Beam theory was firstly introduced to calculate Young's modulus of UO2 from the experimental data and then three-dimensional finite element models of the micro-cantilever beams were constructed to simulate bending tests in UO2 at room temperature. The influence of the pore distribution was studied to explain the discrepancy between predicted values and experimental results. Results indicate that results of tests are significantly affected by porosity given that both pore size and spacing in the samples are of the order of the micro-beam dimensions. Microstructure reconstruction was conducted with images collected from three-dimensional serial sectioning using focused ion beam (FIB) and electron backscattering diffraction (EBSD) and pore clusters were placed at different locations along the length of the beam. Results indicate that the presence of pore clusters close to the substrate, i.e., the clamp of the micro-cantilever beam, has the strongest effect on load-deflection behavior, leading to a reduction of stiffness that is the largest for any location of the pore cluster. Furthermore, it was also found from both numerical and i

analytical models that pore clusters located towards the middle of the span and close to the end of the beam only have a very small effect on the load-deflection behavior, and it is concluded that better estimates of Young's modulus can be obtained from micro- cantilever experiments by using microstructurally explicit models that account for porosity in about one half of the beam length close to the clamp. This, in turn, provides an avenue to simplify micro-scale experiments and their analysis.

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2015