Santa Barbara, CA 93106-5070
ME Research Areas:
Research will focus on the creation and design of advanced materials with unprecedented structural performance under extremes of strains, stress, and temperature. Commercially available materials typically have strength or toughness limitations and trade-offs and the overarching research goals will seek to understand and predict how to design and make novel lightweight materials that attain strengths nearer to their theoretical limits. These materials include multi-phase microstructures or nanostructures that can be manufactured in sizes suitable for structural applications. Such advanced structural materials in bulk are critical for achieving the desired fuel economy and other critical performance metrics of a vast array of applications for our aircraft, aerospace, automotive, medical, space, energy and defense industries. The research builds and advances high-throughput computational materials science and aims to uncover and understand key deformation mechanisms, to model and predict prevailing defect interactions with internal grain boundaries and interfaces, and to simulate manufacturing processes in order to design pathways for target micro- or nanostrutures. New innovative research thrusts will be initiated on (i) new lightweight Mg and Ti alloys that meet the high engineering performance metrics that are needed for gaining marketplace acceptance, (ii) nanolayered multi-phase materials with an unusually high density of interfaces that significantly impact structural properties; (iii) advanced 3D, full-field spatially resolved mechanical modeling techniques with experimentally informed microstructures and (iv) use of probability modeling and dislocation theory to help bridge from the atomic scale, span the mesoscale length and time scales, and connect to the macroscale where materials are tested in the laboratory.