Archive for the 'Materials Science' Category

Alcoa Scholarships for Undergrads at University of Virginia

Dear  second and third year SEAS students,

Welcome back to Grounds and the new semester. I am writing to alert you to scholarships available through our Alcoa Campus Partnership Program.

Knowing that engineers play important roles as innovators and leaders in the American and global economy, Alcoa provides two undergraduate scholarships ($3,500 each) to students who have demonstrated the aptitude to become future leaders in engineering.

Alcoa scholarships are available to all second- and third-year SEAS students, but we encourage students majoring in disciplines of special interest to Alcoa—Engineering Science (Material Science Minor), Mechanical Engineering, or Aerospace Engineering—to apply. We urge women and underrepresented minority students as well as students in the Engineering Business Minor to apply for these awards to ensure a diverse and talented engineering workforce. A scholarship committee of SEAS faculty and Alcoa representatives will select the recipients on a merit basis.

The selection for these scholarships will take place early in the fall of 2013, allowing Alcoa to contact the winners to discuss 2014 summer internship positions.

DEADLINE: 4.59 PM, 9 September 2013

TO APPLY

Please provide FOUR COPIES of the following to Vanessa Pace, Department of Engineering & Society, Thornton A237, vpp@virginia.edu.

+ Application form (available from Ms. Pace)

+ 250-word essay discussing how you would use the scholarship to develop as an engineering leader

+ Unofficial transcript

+ Resume

Please contact me if you have any questions about this exciting opportunity.

Sincerely,
WB Carlson
Director, Engineering Business Programs

Email: wc4p@virginia.edu

 ABOUT ALCOA

Alcoa is the world’s leading producer of primary and fabricated aluminum, as well as the world’s largest miner of bauxite and refiner of alumina. In addition to inventing the modern-day aluminum industry, Alcoa innovation has been behind major milestones in the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation, consumer electronics and industrial markets over the past 125 years. Aluminum is infinitely recyclable and approximately 75 percent of all of the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in active use today. Alcoa employs approximately 61,000 people in 30 countries across the world.

 

ALCOA INTERNSHIPS: http://www.alcoa.com/global/en/careers/campus/internships.asp

Metallic Glass Offers High Strength, Toughness

Popular Science (1/11, Boyle) reports, “Materials scientists in California have made a special metallic glass with a strength and toughness” that is reportedly “greater than any known material” and uses “a recipe that could yield a new method for materials fabrication.” The material is “a microalloy made of palladium” and “has a chemical structure that counteracts the inherent brittleness of glass but maintains its strength. It’s not very dense and it is more lightweight than steel, with comparable heft to an aluminum or titanium alloy.” Materials scientist and co-author Robert O. Ritchie of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory said, “It has probably the best combination of strength and toughness that has ever been achieved. … It’s not the strongest material ever made, but it’s certainly one of the best with a combination of strength and toughness.”

Reposted from the 1/12/11 ASEE First Bell.

Making an LED

Learn the basics of how LEDs are made from this brief video, The Anatomy of an LED.

Here is the link:  http://www.creeledrevolution.com/learn/anatomy#

Automotive X-Prize Winner

Automotive X-Prize Names Winning Vehicles.

The Washington Post (9/17, Shin) reports, “A team lead by Charlottesville developer Oliver Kuttner has won an international competition sponsored by Progressive Auto Insurance and the US Department of Energy to build a car that can go 100 miles on a gallon of gasoline.” By achieving 102.5 miles per gallon with its Very Light Car, Kuttner’s Edison2 “was awarded the largest chunk of the $10 million purse offered by the X Prize Foundation, which created the competition.” The vehicle achieved the increased efficiency by “using lightweight materials, aerodynamic design and a combustion engine. It beat out vehicles that relied on batteries, which are heavier — and thus create more drag — more expensive, and dependent on electricity generated by greenhouse gas-emitting power plants.”

Reuters (9/17) quotes X PRIZE Foundation Chairman and CEO Peter Diamandis as saying, “We’re living in a day and time where literally anything is possible. … A man or woman can go out and build a spaceship or a 100 mile per gallon car. This is only the beginning.”

The Los Angeles Times (9/17, Hsu) reports Edison2 received $5 million for taking first place in the mainstream class. Meanwhile, the tandem class was won by Switzerland’s X-Tracer team and its “battery-powered E-Tracer #79,” which “can run up to the equivalent of 205.3 miles per gallon and has two extra stabilizing wheels that emerge at low speeds.” X-Tracer was awarded $2.5 million. Similarly, “Li-ion Motors Corp. of North Carolina won $2.5 million in the alternative side-by-side class with its Wave II electric vehicle,” which achieved “the equivalent of 187 miles per gallon.” The Times notes, “The three winners now qualify for a Department of Energy program that will help prepare the vehicles for commercialization in the United States.”

Focusing on Edison2 and its Very Light Car No. 98, the AP (9/17) reports that, according to Kuttner, “a team of around 100 people – including many racing veterans – developed the car. They opted for a one-cylinder, ethanol-capable engine instead of an electric car because batteries add weight and gas is readily available. But the team said its innovations in aerodynamics and the use of lightweight materials could apply to any kind of vehicle.” A racecar driver himself, Kuttner said “We’ve been working on these types of solutions, really, all our lives. … In racing, fuel is a precious resource. One less pit stop is the difference between winning and losing.”

“The X Prize is only the beginning,” Kuttner is quoted as saying in the Wired (9/16, Squatriglia) “Autopia” blog. “We need to demonstrate that low-mass cars can be safe and meet FMVSS safety standards. We need to show how our Light Car principles can dramatically improve efficiency for electric, hybrid, diesel and natural gas systems. And we need to create cars to fit the wide needs of consumers: SUV’s, family sedans, sports and utility models – all light, aerodynamic, safe and incredibly efficient.”

NPR (9/17) reports that, according to David Champion of Consumer Reports, “car engineers still need to iron out kinks with braking, emergency handling and acceleration.” Scalability is also an important consideration, experts said. But while these vehicles are still “very much in their development stages,” Champion said the competition “really showed the passion and the drive and the ingenuity of these engineers to produce these cars that were extremely fuel efficient.” X Prize Foundation CEO Peter Diamandis said, “This is a prize to show the public that you can have a car that is beautiful, affordable, fast, safe and, ‘Oh by the way – it can get over 100 mpg or the gas equivalent.’ And why would you want anything else?” The Wall Street Journal (9/17) website carries a slideshow of the winning vehicles, and ultra-efficient cars in general.

Reposted from the 9/17/10 ASEE First Bell.

Solar Cell, Heal Thyself!

Reposted from the 9/3/10 ASEE First Bell.

Synthetic, Self-Assembling Chloroplast Helps Solar Cells Repair Themselves.

Popular Science (9/3, Dillow) reports researchers at MIT think they have developed “a synthetic, self-assembling chloroplast that can be broken down and reassembled repeatedly, restoring solar cells that are damaged by the sun.” The design mimics the way “leaves rapidly recycle their proteins as often as every 45 minutes when in direct summer sunlight,” allowing them to repair themselves. “To recreate this unique regenerative ability, the MIT team devised a novel set of self-assembling molecules that use photons to shake electrons loose in the form of electricity.” The cells currently “work at 40 percent efficiency, and researchers think with some tweaks they could push that efficiency much higher.”

Hyperdense Materials

This article reposted from the August 27, 2010 ASEE First Bell:

Bacteriophages Used To Create Hyperdense Materials.

The Wired (8/26, Carmody) “Gadget Lab” blog reports that researchers in Angela Belcher’s Biomolecular Materials Group at MIT have used “bacteriophages to build – really, evolve – hyperdense materials from ionic particles,” and “this week Mark Allen, a postdoc in the group, outlined the use of a new cathode made with iron flouride.” Among the potential applications Allen discussed were “wearable battery packs for soliders, first responders, and civilians; tiny rechargable batteries for portable electronics including smart phones, laptops, and GPS; [and] unmanned aerial vehicles, which require lightweight, long-lasting power sources.”

Ceramic Printing and Folding

New Ceramic Printing, Folding Process Could Lead To Lightweight Parts.

Technology Review (4/15, Bourzac) reports, “A new way of printing and folding ceramic and metal lattices into miniature structures could lead to novel lightweight engineering structures. The technique involves making latticed sheets from ceramic ink, then folding and heating these sheets to create intricate shapes.” The researchers, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Northwestern University, say the method “fills a need for a way to fabricate complex structures on the centimeter scale–too small for conventional molding or machining, and too big for lithography or similar techniques.” Among the noted potential applications for the process are aerospace, tissue engineering and industrial chemical production.

Reposted from ASEE First Bell, April 15, 2010


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