Nanoscale Characterization and Aim-Specific Design of Amorphous Materials
Properties of materials are being explored both for fundamental research and engineering applications. Specifically, mechanical properties of materials (e.g., strength, stiffness, and deformation) are important for all aspects of human civilization, including energy, transportation, and communication. However, the existence of lattice-based (i.e., periodic) microstructures limits the mechanical operation and the lifetime of materials. This research program proposes to investigate amorphous metal alloys by measuring their local mechanical properties to ultimately enable their aim-specific design. Conventional mechanical characterization techniques (e.g., compression, tension tests) only measure area/volume-averaged properties. As a result, it is not well-understood how deviations from the ideal lattice in disordered materials alter the local mechanical properties and thus, the governing physical and mechanical principles at the relevant length scales, i.e., nanometers. Furthermore, the lack of this basic knowledge hampers engineers and scientists in their efforts to establish the structure-property relationship of amorphous metals. To fill this fundamental gap, our research program will focus on the local mechanical characterization of disordered metal alloy compounds such as bulk metallic glasses, i.e., amorphous metals with no periodic crystal structure that is stronger than steel while being more resistant to wear and corrosion than regular metals. The intellectual merit of the proposed research program is that it will deliver the direct and accurate determination of the mechanical properties and deformation mechanisms of amorphous materials across different length scales as a function of the preparation history, sample size, alloy composition, and probing volume while enabling structure-property relationships facilitated by novel sample preparation (e.g., thermoplastic forming) and characterization techniques (e.g., scanning probe microscopy).
The trained HQP will be equipped with unique skills and hands-on experience in an area that combines multidisciplinary expertise to perform investigations of materials at the nanoscale and to implement new experimental approaches while meeting the academic and industrial demands in Canada.
Good communication skills.
Experience for experimental research is an asset but not required.
Basic Matlab programming or eager to learn programming.
The application shall include all these documents named as noted here:
• a motivation letter,
• a curriculum vitae with the list of published articles,
• a research plan (one-page max).