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Materials Science at Oregon State University

Nanoparticles and their Contributions to Mechanical Properties and Radiation Tolerance

Date: Thursday, Feb 21st
Presenter: Prof. Tianyi Chen, OSU Nuclear Science and Engineering


The state-of-the-art knowledge in thermodynamics and kinetics, and computer-assisted alloy design techniques are drawing new attention to the traditional concept of particle/precipitate strengthening. Through the smart design of alloy compound and fabrication processing, the crystal structures, distributions, thermal stability, and coarsening rate of precipitates can be accurately controlled and predicted, such in the case of the castable-nanostructured alloys and oxide-dispersion-strengthened alloys for advanced nuclear reactors. While models have been developed to describe the overall mechanical contribution from precipitations, usually based on their size and density, the lack of understanding in microstructure-related strengthening mechanisms of the precipitates prevents us from exploiting the potential of particle-strengthened alloys particularly for their use in extreme conditions. The significance of the microstructures and radiation-induced microstructural evolution of the precipitates on their mechanical contribution is to be exemplified in the presentation. The potential of some new avenues to tailor the mechanical performance of nanoparticle-strengthened alloys will also be discussed.

Dr. Tianyi Chen is an assistant professor of Nuclear Science and Engineering at Oregon State University. His research crosses the boundaries of radiation, materials, and mechanics. His interests include materials development, radiation-induced microstructural evolution, radiation effects on mechanical and thermal properties, and materials characterizations. He utilizes both experimental and computational tools to provide solutions to engineering and scientific challenges in nuclear-relevant materials. Before joining Oregon State University, Dr. Chen worked at Oak Ridge National Lab, Idaho National Lab, Argonne National Lab, and Texas A and M University.