Yijia Gu, a Ph.D. student working in...
Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and the
Norris B. McFarlane Faculty Professorship
202A Steidle Building
Allison Beese received her B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Penn State University. Following her undergraduate studies, she was employed at Lockheed Martin’s Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, where she designed large scale experiments and performed failure analysis of nuclear power plant components. She then entered graduate school at MIT, where she conducted research in Professor Tomasz Wierzbicki’s Impact and Crashworthiness Laboratory, and was awarded a Department of Defense National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship. She earned her M.S. and her Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Biomechanics at MIT.
Her doctoral research involved experimental characterization and modeling of the large deformation behavior of anisotropic steel sheets undergoing strain-induced phase transformation. Dr. Beese spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow in Professor Horacio Espinosa’s Micro and Nanomechanics Laboratory at Northwestern University, where she experimentally studied fabrication-structure-property relationships of both carbon based nanomaterials, using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS)-based testing techniques in situ a transmission electron microscope (TEM), and macroscopic materials derived from nanoscale carbon constituents.
She joined the Materials Science and Engineering faculty at Penn State in July 2013.
Dr. Beese’s research interests are in experimental and computational multiscale mechanics of materials ranging from metals to composites. Her research focuses on developing experimental methods to elucidate the connections between the evolving microstructure and the macroscopic deformation, dissipation, and failure properties of materials. Using the experimental results, predictive large deformation and failure models can be developed.
One particular material of interest is steel, which remains one of the most widely used structural materials, and new grades of steels are constantly being developed. Advanced High Strength Steels (AHSS) are a particularly attractive class of steels, as they offer increased strength without sacrificing ductility, lending themselves to the application in lightweight vehicle structures where high mass specific energy absorption is critically important. However, in order to fully exploit the benefits of these AHSS, it is imperative to understand the mechanisms of deformation and failure in order to develop physically-based predictive computational models that can be used in the forming and crash predictions of large scale structural components.
Metastable austenitic steels belong to the class of AHSS. They offer a combination of high strength and ductility, which is attributed to their characteristic deformation-induced phase transformation. Dr. Beese has developed experimental methods to quantify the evolution of the microstructure non-destructively with applied large deformation and varying stress state, resulting in the development of a finite-deformation anisotropic plasticity model that describes the constitutive behavior of stainless steel sheets undergoing phase transformation from austenite to martensite. Current research is focused on expanding these techniques and models to different AHSS, and experimentally and computationally describing the fracture properties of these AHSS.
She also has experience in the design and testing of carbon-based composite materials, where a macroscale composite is composed of nanoscale constituents: either carbon nanotubes or graphene oxide. These materials are investigated toward the development of high-performance composites for armor applications.
Beese, A.M., D. Papkov, S. Li, Y. Dzenis, and H.D. Espinosa. In situ TEM elucidation of diameter and structure effects on mechanical properties of electrospun carbonized fibers. Carbon, vol. 60, pp. 246-253, 2013.
Beese, A.M., S. Sarkar, A. Nair, M. Naraghi, Z. An, A. Moravsky, R.O. Loutfy, M.J. Buehler, S.T. Nguyen, and H.D. Espinosa. Bio-inspired Carbon Nanotube-Polymer Composite Yarns with Hydrogen Bond-Mediated Lateral Interactions. ACS Nano, vol. 7(4), pp. 3434-3446, 2013.
Beese, A.M., and D. Mohr. Anisotropic Plasticity Model Coupled with Lode Angle Dependent Strain-Induced Transformation Kinetics Law. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, vol. 60(11), pp. 1922-1940, 2012.
Beese, A.M., and D. Mohr. Effect of Stress Triaxiality and Lode Angle on the Kinetics of Strain-induced Austenite-to-Martensite Transformation, Acta Materialia, vol. 59 (7), pp. 2589-2600, 2011.
Beese, A.M., and D. Mohr. Identification of the Direction-dependence of the Martensitic Transformation in Stainless Steel using In-situ Magnetic Permeability Measurements, Experimental Mechanics, vol. 51(5), pp. 667-676, 2011.
Professor Manias received his B.S. degree in Physics from the Aristotle U in Thessaloniki, Greece, and his Ph.D. in Chemistry from U. of Groningen, the Netherlands. He subsequently carried out postdoctoral research in the Materials Science and Engineering department at Cornell U, before joining Penn State as an assistant professor in 1998. His research combines theoretical, simulation, and experimental approaches focused on explaining how nanoscale structures affect the macroscopic materials properties in multi-phase polymer systems, and on further designing appropriate structures and functionalities that lead to high-performance novel materials.
Professor Manias’ research focuses on the development of new high performance polymer and polymer-composite materials, with approaches spanning the range from basic-science fundamentals to engineering development of materials designed for specific applications. All of these research efforts exploit the unique opportunities of nanoscale structures and nanoscopic components in polymer and organic materials.
More specifically, examples of recent work in Professor Manias’ research group include: (a) development of high performance polymer/inorganic nanocomposites, involving synthesis, processing, fundamental physics, and engineering design approaches; (b) atomic force microscopy (AFM) studies of polymer surfaces and polymer nanostructures, including he development of new state-of-the-art instruments and modifications of AFM modes of operation; (c) fundamental understanding of nanoscopically confined polymer electrolytes and lubricants, based on molecular modeling; and (d) design and syntheses of smart polymers that respond to external stimuli –such as temperature, electric fields, and pH– and applications of these smart materials in biomedical and surface applications.
A unique feature of Manias’ research group approach in its investigations is the concurrent in-depth employment of polymer physics, molecular modeling computer simulations, synthetic chemistry, and engineering approaches –design, processing, characterization, structure-property relations, and application-driven materials development. The feedback and cross-fertilization between fundamental science, computer modeling, and engineering approaches offers unprecedented opportunities for fast progress in research, and to date has yielded diverse results that were featured in eminent scientific journals of physics, polymers, and engineering, new technologies that were patented, and new advances in materials that were featured in popularized-science books and magazines.
Long-Qing Chen is Distinguished Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Professor of Engineering Science and Mechanics at the Pennsylvania State University. He is a short-term visiting Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Tsinghua University under the short-term 1000-Scholar program, a guest Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Zhejiang University, and a guest Professor of Physics at the Beijing University of Science and Technology in China. He received his B.S. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Zhejiang University in China in 1982. After spending one year as an assistant instructor at Zhejiang University, he came to the United States in 1983 and received his M.S. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1985 and a Ph.D. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1990. After a two-year post-doc appointment with Professor Armen G. Khachaturyanat Rutgers University, he joined the faculty at Penn State as an Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in 1992. He was promoted to Associated Professor in 1998 and Professor in 2002. Professor Chen teaches undergraduate thermodynamics of materials and graduate kinetics of materials processes and also co-teaches one graduate course and one undergraduate course in computational materials science in the department. Professor Chen's main research interest is developing multiscale computational models for predicting microstructure evolution in materials using a combination of atomistic/first-principles calculations and phase-field methods. In particular, he is interested in microstructure evolution during phase transformations, grain growth, Ostwald ripening, ferroelectric and multiferroic domain switching, and coupled ionic/electronic transport in electrochemical systems. His research group collaborates actively with numerous experimental groups, applied mathematicians, and other fellow computational materials scientists and physicists as well as with more than a dozen companies and national labs. Professor Chen has published over 350 authored or co-authored papers (H-index = 51, Number of Citations >10,000), 1 patent licensed by Intel, and co-edited 3 books in the area of computational materials science of microstructures and properties. He has given more than 200 invited talks including 6 at the Gordon Research Conferences. Professor Chen's current and former graduate students have received more than 40 awards including Materials Research Society Graduate Student Gold and Silver Medal Awards, American Ceramic Society Graduate Excellence in Materials Science Awards, Acta Materialia best student paper award, Penn State Materials Research Institute best Ph.D. thesis research award, TMS Young Leader Award, etc. Professor Chen received numerous awards for his work including:
Dr. Chen’s main research interest is in the fundamental understanding of the thermodynamics and kinetics of phase transformations and mesoscale microstructure evolution in bulk solid and thin films using computer simulations. Essentially all engineering materials contain certain types of microstructures, and our success of designing new materials is largely dependent on our ability to control them. Microstructure is a general term that refers to a spatial distribution of structural features that can be phases of different compositions and/or crystal structures, or grains of different orientations, or domains of different structural variants, or domains of different electrical or magnetic polarization, as well as structural defects such as dislocations. It is the size, shape, and spatial arrangement of the local structural features that determine the physical properties of a material such as mechanical, electrical, magnetic and optical properties. For the last decade, Dr. Chen’s group at Penn State is particularly active in developing phase-field models for microstructure evolution during various materials processes including grain growth, coherent precipitation, ferroelectric domain formation, particle coarsening, domain structure evolution in thin films, phase transformation in the presence of structural defects, and effect of stress on microstructure evolution. Current research focus is on the effect of stress/strain on ferroelectric phase transitions and domain structure evolution in ferroelectric and multiferroic thin films, domain structures in ferromagnetic shape memory alloys, electrode microstructure evolution in solid oxide fuel cells and batteries, precipitate microstructure evolution in Al-, Mg-, Ti- and Ni-alloys, strain-dominated morphological evolution, effect of defects such as dislocations on microstructure evolution. Dr. Chen’s group collaborates extensively with experimentalists and with industry.
Alloy development for aerospace and automobile iapplications
Ferroelectric and ferromagnetic thin films for memory, capacitor and electromechanical system applications
Solid oxide fuel cells and batteries
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