Summer Undergraduate Research Mentored Experience

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Dr. Calvin Stewart

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Testing and Characterization of Superalloys

Preferred major field of study or minimum required skills

Microsoft Excel, MathCAD, CAD Software, Structural Mechanics Background.

Scholarly significance/intellectual merit

The purpose of this research project is to develop a three-dimensional digital image correlation (3D DIC) technique that is capable of testing Nickel-based superalloys, among other materials, in order to study their strain displacement fields as high temperatures. Nickel-based superalloys are of particular importance to the Materials at Extremes Research Group (MERG) because they exhibit a remarkable combination of high-temperature strength, toughness, and resistance to degradation in corrosive or oxidizing environments. Because of their superior properties, Nickel-based superalloys are widely used in the aerospace field as materials in gas-turbine engines; thus, fully understanding the deformation and failure characteristics of these materials is crucial to developing predictive models and making stronger materials. In order to meet our objective of developing a 3D DIC technique, we propose modifying existing equipment at the MERG laboratory to conduct mechanical testing experiments on Nickel-based superalloys.

Research question(s)

It is hypothesized that an Integrated High-Temperature 3D Digital Image Correlation System can be created by the MERG Team.

Methods/techniques/instruments to be learned/utilized

The student involved in this project will learn how to operate a universal testing machine, configure a high temperature split tube furnace, and perform HT 3D DIC using UTEP’s world class structural mechanics facilities.