Composites of Ferro Magnetic Shape Memory (FSMA) alloys and polymers will be investigated in order to obtain high damping coefficient materials that can be tuned by the application of an external magnetic field. Twin boundaries motion in the FSMA dissipate s a large amount of mechanical energy, that adds to the inherent loss of the matrix.
Work on NiMnGa/ Polymer composites was the subject of the PhD of the applicant. It has been shown that twin boundaries are mobile and that they are responsible for the large losses observed, but no systematic analyses of the frequency dependence of the loss, the effect of the matrix stiffness and the effect of a magnetic field on the loss have been performed.
The research program will include FMSA and Polymer synthesis and characterization, preparation and processing of the Composites, as well as characterization and test of their magneto-mechanical properties. Neutron diffraction performed in large European facilities will be used to quantify, in-situ, the motion of twin boundaries as a load or a magnetic field is applied.
Finite element analysis will be used to model the stress distribution in the composites. The multidisciplinary character of the project call for collaboration of polymer chemists, metallurgy and magnetic materials scientists, neutron diffraction experts and others.
The possibility to apply a magnetic field to tune both the elastic constants and damping ability of the composites, object of this investigation, is a clear added value with respect to both traditional new and highly effective damping materials.
Finally, training of the applicant and establishment of a close collaboration with European partners (among the current contacts of the host group) will improve the applicant's ability for performing research and will also strength the relationship between European laboratories and the MIT (were the applicant performed his PhD) and Mexico from where he is a national.
Fields of science
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