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Opportunity at Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL)

Shock Physics of Additively Manufactured Material Structures


Materials & Manufacturing, RX/Manufacturing & Industrial Technologies Division

RO# Location
13.25.09.B6890 Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 454337817


Name E-mail Phone
Spowart, Jonathan Edward 937.255.9277


AFRL/RX (Wright-Patterson AFB, OH) is planning a basic research collaboration with AFRL/RW (Eglin AFB, Florida) focusing on the shock characterization of polymeric material structures with novel microstructures produced by Additive Manufacturing (AM). Although AM is a potential enabler for the design and fabrication of highly-optimized materials, there is little understanding of how these novel microstructures will respond to the propagation of stress waves. Therefore, the work will include the precise experimental determination and accurate numerical modeling of the high strain-rate mechanical behavior of AM polymer-based materials, in order to develop quantitative relationships that will enable the use of these materials in shock applications. During this effort, particular emphasis will be given to controlling and investigating those microstructural features, which are (1) typically characteristic of AM methods, (2) suspected to modify the shock behavior of the material, and (3) experimentally quantifiable. Initial experiments will investigate the effects of spatially controlled porosity at various length scales throughout the material, including a detailed investigation of fractal solids. Subsequent investigations will focus on the design of materials with selective reinforcement (i.e,. polymer composites), and materials with embedded multifunctionality. Excellent facilities exist within AFRL/RX for the additive manufacture of each of these materials classes. High Performance Computing (HPC) resources will be made available at AFRL’s DOD Supercomputing Resource Center (DSRC) in order to support high strain rate numerical modeling. High strain-rate mechanical testing will be performed in collaboration with AFRL/RW using single-stage gas guns and/or split-Hopkinson pressure bar (SHPB) apparatus to achieve experimental strain rates between 103 and 106 s-1. Occasional travel between the two facilities will be expected during the course of the research project.


Additive manufacturing; Shock physics; Fractal solids; High strain rate;


Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants
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