Matching Items (76)

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In situ SEM Testing for Fatigue Crack Growth: Mechanical Investigation of Titanium

Description

Widespread knowledge of fracture mechanics is mostly based on previous models that generalize crack growth in materials over several loading cycles. The objective of this project is to characterize crack growth that occurs in titanium alloys, specifically Grade 5 Ti-6Al-4V,

Widespread knowledge of fracture mechanics is mostly based on previous models that generalize crack growth in materials over several loading cycles. The objective of this project is to characterize crack growth that occurs in titanium alloys, specifically Grade 5 Ti-6Al-4V, at the sub-cycle scale, or within a single loading cycle. Using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), imaging analysis is performed to observe crack behavior at ten loading steps throughout the loading and unloading paths. Analysis involves measuring the incremental crack growth and crack tip opening displacement (CTOD) of specimens at loading ratios of 0.1, 0.3, and 0.5. This report defines the relationship between crack growth and the stress intensity factor, K, of the specimens, as well as the relationship between the R-ratio and stress opening level. The crack closure phenomena and effect of microcracks are discussed as they influence the crack growth behavior. This method has previously been used to characterize crack growth in Al 7075-T6. The results for Ti-6Al-4V are compared to these previous findings in order to strengthen conclusions about crack growth behavior.

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2018-05

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Enhanced Invasion of Metastatic Cancer Cells Via Extracellular Matrix Interface

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Cancer cell invasion is a major component of metastasis and is responsible for extensive cell diffusion into and major destruction of tissues. Cells exhibit complex invasion modes, including a variety of collective behaviors. This phenomenon results in the structural heterogeneity

Cancer cell invasion is a major component of metastasis and is responsible for extensive cell diffusion into and major destruction of tissues. Cells exhibit complex invasion modes, including a variety of collective behaviors. This phenomenon results in the structural heterogeneity of the extracellular matrix (ECM) in tissues. Here, we systematically investigated the environmental heterogeneity facilitating tumor cell invasion via a combination of in vitro cell migration experiments and computer simulations. Specifically, we constructed an ECM microenvironment in a microfabricated biochip and successfully created a three-dimensional (3D) funnel-like matrigel interface inside. Scanning electron microscopy demonstrated that the interface was at the interior defects of the nano-scale molecular anisotropic orientation and the localized structural density variations in the matrigel. Our results, particularly the correlation of the collective migration pattern with the geometric features of the funnel-like interface, indicate that this heterogeneous in vitro ECM structure strongly guides and promotes aggressive cell invasion in the rigid matrigel space. A cellular automaton model was proposed based on our experimental observations, and the associated quantitative analysis indicated that cell invasion was initiated and controlled by several mechanisms, including microenvironment heterogeneity, long-range cell-cell homotype and gradient-driven directional cellular migration. Our work shows the feasibility of constructing a complex and heterogeneous in vitro 3D ECM microenvironment that mimics the in vivo environment. Moreover, our results indicate that ECM heterogeneity is essential in controlling collective cell invasive behaviors and therefore determining metastasis efficiency.

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Date Created
2015-02-23

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A Geometric-Structure Theory for Maximally Random Jammed Packings

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Maximally random jammed (MRJ) particle packings can be viewed as prototypical glasses in that they are maximally disordered while simultaneously being mechanically rigid. The prediction of the MRJ packing density ϕMRJ, among other packing properties of frictionless particles, still poses

Maximally random jammed (MRJ) particle packings can be viewed as prototypical glasses in that they are maximally disordered while simultaneously being mechanically rigid. The prediction of the MRJ packing density ϕMRJ, among other packing properties of frictionless particles, still poses many theoretical challenges, even for congruent spheres or disks. Using the geometric-structure approach, we derive for the first time a highly accurate formula for MRJ densities for a very wide class of two-dimensional frictionless packings, namely, binary convex superdisks, with shapes that continuously interpolate between circles and squares. By incorporating specific attributes of MRJ states and a novel organizing principle, our formula yields predictions of ϕMRJ that are in excellent agreement with corresponding computer-simulation estimates in almost the entire α-x plane with semi-axis ratio α and small-particle relative number concentration x. Importantly, in the monodisperse circle limit, the predicted ϕMRJ = 0.834 agrees very well with the very recently numerically discovered MRJ density of 0.827, which distinguishes it from high-density “random-close packing” polycrystalline states and hence provides a stringent test on the theory. Similarly, for non-circular monodisperse superdisks, we predict MRJ states with densities that are appreciably smaller than is conventionally thought to be achievable by standard packing protocols.

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Date Created
2015-11-16

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A Cellular Automaton Model for Tumor Dormancy: Emergence of a Proliferative Switch

Description

Malignant cancers that lead to fatal outcomes for patients may remain dormant for very long periods of time. Although individual mechanisms such as cellular dormancy, angiogenic dormancy and immunosurveillance have been proposed, a comprehensive understanding of cancer dormancy and the

Malignant cancers that lead to fatal outcomes for patients may remain dormant for very long periods of time. Although individual mechanisms such as cellular dormancy, angiogenic dormancy and immunosurveillance have been proposed, a comprehensive understanding of cancer dormancy and the “switch” from a dormant to a proliferative state still needs to be strengthened from both a basic and clinical point of view. Computational modeling enables one to explore a variety of scenarios for possible but realistic microscopic dormancy mechanisms and their predicted outcomes. The aim of this paper is to devise such a predictive computational model of dormancy with an emergent “switch” behavior. Specifically, we generalize a previous cellular automaton (CA) model for proliferative growth of solid tumor that now incorporates a variety of cell-level tumor-host interactions and different mechanisms for tumor dormancy, for example the effects of the immune system. Our new CA rules induce a natural “competition” between the tumor and tumor suppression factors in the microenvironment. This competition either results in a “stalemate” for a period of time in which the tumor either eventually wins (spontaneously emerges) or is eradicated; or it leads to a situation in which the tumor is eradicated before such a “stalemate” could ever develop. We also predict that if the number of actively dividing cells within the proliferative rim of the tumor reaches a critical, yet low level, the dormant tumor has a high probability to resume rapid growth. Our findings may shed light on the fundamental understanding of cancer dormancy.

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Date Created
2014-10-16

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Reconstruction of Heterogeneous Materials Via Stochastic Optimization of Limited-Angle X-Ray Tomographic Projections

Description

X-ray tomography has provided a non-destructive means for microstructure characterization in three and four dimensions. A stochastic procedure to accurately reconstruct material microstructure from limited-angle X-ray tomographic projections is presented and its utility is demonstrated by reconstructing a variety of

X-ray tomography has provided a non-destructive means for microstructure characterization in three and four dimensions. A stochastic procedure to accurately reconstruct material microstructure from limited-angle X-ray tomographic projections is presented and its utility is demonstrated by reconstructing a variety of distinct heterogeneous materials and elucidating the information content of different projection data sets. A small number of projections (e.g. 20–40) are necessary for accurate reconstructions via the stochastic procedure, indicating its high efficiency in using limited structural information.

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Date Created
2014-09-01

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Equilibrium Phase Behavior and Maximally Random Jammed State of Truncated Tetrahedra

Description

Numerous recent investigations have been devoted to the determination of the equilibrium phase behavior and packing characteristics of hard nonspherical particles, including ellipsoids, superballs, and polyhedra, to name but just a few shapes. Systems of hard nonspherical particles exhibit a

Numerous recent investigations have been devoted to the determination of the equilibrium phase behavior and packing characteristics of hard nonspherical particles, including ellipsoids, superballs, and polyhedra, to name but just a few shapes. Systems of hard nonspherical particles exhibit a variety of stable phases with different degrees of translational and orientational order, including isotropic liquid, solid crystal, rotator and a variety of liquid crystal phases. In this paper, we employ a Monte Carlo implementation of the adaptive-shrinking-cell (ASC) numerical scheme and free-energy calculations to ascertain with high precision the equilibrium phase behavior of systems of congruent Archimedean truncated tetrahedra over the entire range of possible densities up to the maximal nearly space-filling density. In particular, we find that the system undergoes two first-order phase transitions as the density increases: first a liquid–solid transition and then a solid–solid transition. The isotropic liquid phase coexists with the Conway–Torquato (CT) crystal phase at intermediate densities, verifying the result of a previous qualitative study [J. Chem. Phys. 2011, 135, 151101]. The freezing- and melting-point packing fractions for this transition are respectively ϕF = 0.496 ± 0.006 and ϕM = 0.591 ± 0.005.

At higher densities, we find that the CT phase undergoes another first-order phase transition to one associated with the densest-known crystal, with coexistence densities in the range ϕ ∈ [0.780 ± 0.002, 0.802 ± 0.003]. We find no evidence for stable rotator (or plastic) or nematic phases. We also generate the maximally random jammed (MRJ) packings of truncated tetrahedra, which may be regarded to be the glassy end state of a rapid compression of the liquid. Specifically, we systematically study the structural characteristics of the MRJ packings, including the centroidal pair correlation function, structure factor and orientational pair correlation function. We find that such MRJ packings are hyperuniform with an average packing fraction of 0.770, which is considerably larger than the corresponding value for identical spheres (≈ 0.64). We conclude with some simple observations concerning what types of phase transitions might be expected in general hard-particle systems based on the particle shape and which would be good glass formers.

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Date Created
2014-07-17

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Squeezing Out Electricity: Computer-Aided Design and Optimization of Electrodes of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

Description

Solid oxide fuel cells have become a promising candidate in the development of high-density clean energy sources for the rapidly increasing demands in energy and global sustainability. In order to understand more about solid oxide fuel cells, the important ste

Solid oxide fuel cells have become a promising candidate in the development of high-density clean energy sources for the rapidly increasing demands in energy and global sustainability. In order to understand more about solid oxide fuel cells, the important step is to understand how to model heterogeneous materials. Heterogeneous materials are abundant in nature and also created in various processes. The diverse properties exhibited by these materials result from their complex microstructures, which also make it hard to model the material. Microstructure modeling and reconstruction on a meso-scale level is needed in order to produce heterogeneous models without having to shave and image every slice of the physical material, which is a destructive and irreversible process. Yeong and Torquato [1] introduced a stochastic optimization technique that enables the generation of a model of the material with the use of correlation functions. Spatial correlation functions of each of the various phases within the heterogeneous structure are collected from a two-dimensional micrograph representing a slice of a solid oxide fuel cell through computational means. The assumption is that two-dimensional images contain key structural information representative of the associated full three-dimensional microstructure. The collected spatial correlation functions, a combination of one-point and two-point correlation functions are then outputted and are representative of the material. In the reconstruction process, the characteristic two-point correlation functions is then inputted through a series of computational modeling codes and software to generate a three-dimensional visual model that is statistically similar to that of the original two-dimensional micrograph. Furthermore, parameters of temperature cooling stages and number of pixel exchanges per temperature stage are utilized and altered accordingly to observe which parameters has a higher impact on the reconstruction results. Stochastic optimization techniques to produce three-dimensional visual models from two-dimensional micrographs are therefore a statistically reliable method to understanding heterogeneous materials.

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Date Created
2016-05

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Understanding Pitting Corrosion in a High-Performance Aluminum Alloy by 4D X-ray Microtomography

Description

Aluminum alloys are commonly used for engineering applications due to their high strength to weight ratio, low weight, and low cost. Pitting corrosion, accelerated by saltwater environments, leads to fatigue cracks and stress corrosion cracking during service. Two-dimensional (2D) characterization

Aluminum alloys are commonly used for engineering applications due to their high strength to weight ratio, low weight, and low cost. Pitting corrosion, accelerated by saltwater environments, leads to fatigue cracks and stress corrosion cracking during service. Two-dimensional (2D) characterization methods are typically used to identify and characterize corrosion; however, these methods are destructive and do not enable an efficient means of quantifying mechanisms of pit initiation and growth. In this study, lab-scale x-ray microtomography was used to non-destructively observe, quantify, and understand pit growth in three dimensions over a 20-day corrosion period in the AA7075-T651 alloy. The XRT process, capable of imaging sample volumes with a resolution near one micrometer, was found to be an ideal tool for large-volume pit examination. Pit depths were quantified over time using renderings of sample volumes, leading to an understanding of how inclusion particles, oxide breakdown, and corrosion mechanisms impact the growth and morphology of pits. This process, when carried out on samples produced with two different rolling directions and rolling extents, yielded novel insights into the long-term macroscopic corrosion behaviors impacted by alloy production and design. Key among these were the determinations that the alloy’s rolling direction produces a significant difference in the average growth rate of pits and that the corrosion product layer loses its passivating effect as a result of cyclic immersion. In addition, a new mechanism of pitting corrosion is proposed which is focused on the pseudo-random spatial distribution of iron-rich inclusion particles in the alloy matrix, which produces a random distribution of pit depths based on the occurrence of co-operative corrosion near inclusion clusters.

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Date Created
2020-05

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Structural characteristics and applications of hard-particle packings via event-driven molecular dynamics simulations

Description

In this dissertation, the results of our comprehensive computational studies of disordered jammed (i.e., mechanically stable) packings of hard particles are presented, including the family of superdisks in 2D and ellipsoids in 3D Euclidean space. Following a very brief introduction

In this dissertation, the results of our comprehensive computational studies of disordered jammed (i.e., mechanically stable) packings of hard particles are presented, including the family of superdisks in 2D and ellipsoids in 3D Euclidean space. Following a very brief introduction to the hard-particle systems, the event driven molecular dynamics (EDMD) employed to generate the packing ensembles will be discussed. A large number of 2D packing configurations of superdisks are subsequently analyzed, through which a relatively accurate theoretical scheme for packing-fraction prediction based on local particle contact configurations is proposed and validated via additional numerical simulations. Moreover, the studies on binary ellipsoid packing in 3D are briefly discussed and the effects of different geometrical parameters on the final packing fraction are analyzed.

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Date Created
2014

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A novel nonlocal lattice particle framework for modeling of solids

Description

Fracture phenomena have been extensively studied in the last several decades. Continuum mechanics-based approaches, such as finite element methods and extended finite element methods, are widely used for fracture simulation. One well-known issue of these approaches is the stress singularity

Fracture phenomena have been extensively studied in the last several decades. Continuum mechanics-based approaches, such as finite element methods and extended finite element methods, are widely used for fracture simulation. One well-known issue of these approaches is the stress singularity resulted from the spatial discontinuity at the crack tip/front. The requirement of guiding criteria for various cracking behaviors, such as initiation, propagation, and branching, also poses some challenges. Comparing to the continuum based formulation, the discrete approaches, such as lattice spring method, discrete element method, and peridynamics, have certain advantages when modeling various fracture problems due to their intrinsic characteristics in modeling discontinuities.

A novel, alternative, and systematic framework based on a nonlocal lattice particle model is proposed in this study. The uniqueness of the proposed model is the inclusion of both pair-wise local and multi-body nonlocal potentials in the formulation. First, the basic ideas of the proposed framework for 2D isotropic solid are presented. Derivations for triangular and square lattice structure are discussed in detail. Both mechanical deformation and fracture process are simulated and model verification and validation are performed with existing analytical solutions and experimental observations. Following this, the extension to general 3D isotropic solids based on the proposed local and nonlocal potentials is given. Three cubic lattice structures are discussed in detail. Failure predictions using the 3D simulation are compared with experimental testing results and very good agreement is observed. Next, a lattice rotation scheme is proposed to account for the material orientation in modeling anisotropic solids. The consistency and difference compared to the classical material tangent stiffness transformation method are discussed in detail. The implicit and explicit solution methods for the proposed lattice particle model are also discussed. Finally, some conclusions and discussions based on the current study are drawn at the end.

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Date Created
2015