By Heike Brueckner
Thanks to significant financial support from the School of Engineering and the Department of Chemical, Materials & Biomolecular Engineering, the Materials Science & Engineering undergraduate laboratories underwent $140,000 in renovations during 2012. The renovations strengthen and expand the labs as instructional facilities.
New equipment includes a Struers Duravision 20 universal hardness tester, Nanoscience Inc. Nanosurf atomic force microscope, Admet benchtop fatigue tester, and Thermofisher Scientific 1500° C tube furnace. The labs also benefitted from a thorough cleaning and upgraded with handsome display posters that apprise lab users and visitors of the research efforts of the MSE department.
The Materials Science & Engineering undergraduate program offers three one-credit and one three-credit hands-on laboratory courses, and the new equipment supplements the program’s ability to use these courses to provide a state-of-the-art materials education to its students.
MSE Lab Manager and alumnus Adam Wentworth (B.S. ‘09, M.S. ‘11) and MSE sophomore student Alexandra Merkouriou developed new lab modules on the synthesis, characterization and measurement of properties of high-temperature superconducting yttrium barium copper oxide ceramics for the introductory MSE lab course, MSE 2053, and the materials characterization class, MSE 4003, both of which make extensive use of the new equipment.
MSE Program Director and Professor, S. Pamir Alpay, notes “These additional facilities will significantly enhance MSE’s capability to support a wide range of senior capstone design projects. The laboratories and equipment will also be made available to students from all departments within the School of Engineering who are working on senior design projects.”