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CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY ESTABLISHES A CENTER TO AID IN CREATING AND PROCESSING NEW MATERIALS

 CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY ESTABLISHES A CENTER
 TO AID IN CREATING AND PROCESSING NEW MATERIALS
 PITTSBURGH, March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- To help American companies create and process new materials for high technology applications like the National Aerospace Plane, Carnegie Mellon University has established a Center for Advanced Deformation Processing Research (CADPR), it was announced today.
 Deformation processing involves applying forces to materials to shape them or control their microstructures and properties.
 The center is funded initially by the university, its engineering college, the Ben Franklin Technology Center and eight industrial participants, including Alcoa, Dynamet, Kobe Development Corp., and Richter and Co.
 Researchers will investigate processing powders and composites and controlling a material's microstructure. They also will study defects that can occur during processing. According to CADPR Director Henry R. Piehler, professor of materials science and engineering (MSE), research will be conducted on a wide range of materials, including metals, composites, intermetallic compounds and ceramics.
 "The ability to create advanced materials is recognized as one of the three key technological areas necessary to maintain global competitiveness," said Carnegie Mellon President Robert Mehrabian. "A recent National Research Council report on materials science and engineering for the '90s named materials processing, especially as it relates to microstructure development and product performance, as the most serious unfulfilled need in both education and research."
 Work at the center will revolve around a unique research tool -- a hot triaxial compaction device that can enhance the properties of metals, ceramics and composites by compacting their powders at extremely high temperatures, pressures and shear stresses. Piehler said this apparatus can physically model deformation processes and provide much needed but rarely available data to model them on a computer.
 "By understanding the fundamentals of deformation processing in these areas, we can control and model industrial processes," he said. "At this center, we have technology to process materials that can't be processed in any other way."
 During the past two years, Piehler and his colleagues have been using the hot triaxial compactor to do joint research with Alcoa on consolidation of aluminum powders. They have discovered that the most important compaction mechanism of these materials is a phenomenon known as transient creep. But it is not included in any existing computer models of powder compaction.
 Another study, conducted with the Metals and Ceramics Division at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, has shown that fracture during high- temperature processing of titanium aluminides can be suppressed by using the hot triaxial compactor to add pressure during processing.
 "A key aspect of technology transfer from the center to industry lies in students," Piehler said. "American industry needs graduates at all degree levels trained in deformation processing."
 To address educational issues, faculty members will supervise undergraduate and graduate students from MSE and the Civil Engineering Department. Undergraduates enrolled in an industrial internship option through MSE will be able to work several semesters in industry and then be funded to take a fifth year of study in a new master's of science degree program funded through the center.
 Piehler pointed out that as products mature, their differentiation occurs primarily through improvements in process technologies rather than in the products themselves. But while design and manufacturing programs are proliferating across the country, materials processing has received scant attention. He said chemists and chemical engineers have attempted to fill the void in materials processing research, but materials scientists can bring a deeper understanding of processing's influence on microstructure and microstructure's influence on performance that will produce more significant research results.
 -0- 3/24/92
 /CONTACT: Anne Watzman or Teresa Sokol of Carnegie Mellon University, 412-268-3830 or 412-268-8495/ CO: Carnegie Mellon University ST: Pennsylvania IN: MNG SU:


CD -- PG007 -- 1162 03/24/92 14:30 EST
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Date:Mar 24, 1992
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