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National labs and Air Force partner to improve aircraft component design
Date:9/20/2013

has been applied to nickel and titanium alloys.

Metallic materials, like those found in aircraft, have directional dependent properties. By altering the material processing conditions, the microstructure can be tailored by designers to provide optimized properties for expected stress and temperature environments. Location specific design has made an entrance into the aviation industry and the Air Force fleet, but is currently limited to a small number of components because of the extensive testing program needed. The process works well for incremental changes, but limits the development of revolutionary new materials like those used for engine turbine disks, because it would require millions of dollars over a span of decades.

With the development and validation of these new microstructure modeling tools that can predict materials behavior, including variability and uncertainty, engineering design can be revolutionized by unlocking the true potential of the materials' employed capabilities, safety, and fuel efficiency. The economies of scale for materials affected by these advancements have the potential to save billions.

"Access to this data nondestructively during conventional thermo-mechanical testing provides a unique opportunity to go after previously unanswered questions and opens new areas of research," said Jay Schuren the Principal Investigator on the project and a Materials Research Engineer at the Air Force Research Laboratory.

The APS provided the team with access to the nation's only X-ray beamline for non-destructive in situ structural studies of buried interfaces at atomic resolution. The HEXD beamline capitalizes on the penetration power of the APS's high-energy X-rays and their high-brightness, which enables scientists to examine small areas. This combination is perfect for measuring strains to study the stresses under extreme operating conditions such as thermo-mechanical deformation. By using these unique tools
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Contact: Tona Kunz
tkunz@sbcglobal.net
630-252-5560
DOE/Argonne National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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