Professor 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 among the microstructure, macroscopic deformation, damage accumulation, and failure properties of materials. Using experimental data, physically-based large deformation and failure models can be developed to predict component performance.
One current research thrust in her group focuses on additive manufacturing (AM) of metallic components. In AM of metals, powder or wire feedstock is delivered to a location, melted with a laser or electron beam, and as the material cools and solidifies, it fuses to the material below. This allows for the fabrication of complex 3-dimensional components in a layer-by-layer fashion. However, it introduces rapid thermal cycles that result in microstructures that differ drastically from their cast or wrought counterparts. To make full use of these components in structural applications, their mechanical properties must be characterized and predictable. Professor Beese’s group focuses on a variety of materials characterization techniques to uncover the relationships among thermal history, microstructure, and mechanical properties within macroscopic components.
Another research thrust focuses on uncovering the mechanisms of ductile failure of metals over a wide range of stress states toward the development of predictive computational fracture models. Two applications in which these models are critical are in forming operations and crash situations of automobile components. Advanced High Strength Steels are a particularly attractive class of materials for the automobile industry, as they offer increased strength over traditional steels without sacrificing ductility, lending themselves to application in lightweight vehicle structures. However, to fully exploit their benefits, it is imperative to understand the mechanisms of deformation and failure in order to develop physically-based computational models. Professor Beese’s group develops experimental techniques to characterize the evolving microstructure of these steels, some of which undergo a phase transformation upon deformation, which provides significant strain hardening at the macroscale.
- TMS AIME Robert Lansing Hardy Award (2018)
- NSF CAREER Award (2017)
- International Outstanding Young Researcher in Freeform and Additive Manufacturing Award (2017)
- 3M Non-Tenured Faculty Award (2016)
- Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Award (2015)
- TMS Young Leader Professional Development Award (2015)