|Mechanism for electric field effects during sintering
Hans Conrad at North Carolina State University in recent years has been studying how AC or DC fields applied during sintering reduce processing temperatures necessary for elimination of porosity, while simultaneously reducing grain growth.
Now he weighs-in on what the possible mechanisms might be that explain the suppression of grain growth. [More]
|Materials football game of the week: Auburn U. versus Clemson U.
Saturday's Auburn and Clemson game is a contest between brother schools with a family resemblance and some shared heritage. Both universities are public institutions in the Deep South with about 25,000 students, have tiger mascots and main administration buildings designed by the same architect.
Clemson's engineers can claim credit for the football program. Back in 1896, engineering professor (and Auburn alum), Walter Riggs, was recruited by students to coach the first team. As a mechanical and electrical engineer, Riggs would have felt quite at home in the department of materials science and engineering. Seniors are required to enroll in a faculty research group experience for credit, and in their senior design course, students divide into two or three teams and compete with each other to solve the same problem (from an industrial partner of the school).
Auburn engineering students in their senior year also know what head-to-head competition is all about. A two-course sequence guides them through a "construction" exercise and a "deconstruction" exercise. In the fall materials property and selection course, students go through the steps of making a product. In the spring, the senior design course is structured as a mock court case where students study a failed component and half the students represent the "defendant," and the other half the "plaintiff."
Eileen is 0-1, so far. Will her predictions improve? [More]
|Solyndra, redux: It wasn't ready for prime time?
The finanicial scandal involving the California photovoltaics company with the nifty CIGs tubular assembly gets messier every day, and now at least three investigations have been launched.
Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee released the findings of a seven-month investigation into support for Solyndra and questioned two administration officials about White House support. Emails from the OMB raise even more questions.
Meanwhile, the FBI and the DOE's Inspector General's continue their separate investigations, and yet a third investigation - this time by the Treasury Department's inspector general - has been announced. [More]