British library Oral History Collection

Harry Bhadeshia fans shouldn’t overlook this important resource:

Harry Bhadeshia – Oral history of British science

Harry Bhadeshia British Library

Harry Bhadeshia British Library

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EDX Introduction to Steel 101

I completed an EDX course Introduction to steel earlier this week, taught by Mark Miodownik. The course is self-paced, and the total time needed to work through the material is around 2-3 hours.

I completed the course in 1 session, you could split up the course into smaller portions, if you can spend 20 minutes at a time.

I think this short course is an OK introduction to steel, and to the EDX technology. The course can be viewed as an enhanced lecture, since at the end of each short segment there is a little interactivity, in the form of some multiple choice questions or interactive graphics.

The material is really simplified, the major take homes are; the importance of steel, that it’s a versatile material, why it is the ultimate engineering material, what sort of things control the properties.

The course is quite short for such a large subject matter, so of course it’s rather simplified. I think in a few areas it is too simplified and might be misleading. An example of my concern would be the explanation of how quenching effects the microstructure, nothing about martensite phase is mentioned, only that quenching “freezes in the structure”. The approach is rather like the simplifications that take place in teaching physics were you find out at each level that everything you were taught to date, so I hope people watching the video would be motivated to study further about steels or metals.

Anyway these people seem happy:

So well done to Mark Miodownik and Tenaris for this innovation.

Shout out for Acoustic Emission in Failing Materials – Kirkaldy Museum

The Kirkaldy museum in London have been torturing some materials using artists and test equipment.

The Kirkaldy museum preserves testing machines designed to perform mechanical tests on finished engineering components. It is the site of the testing house established by David Kirkaldy (1820–1897) a Scottish engineer who pioneered the testing of materials as a service to engineers during the Victorian period. In Southwark, London, a large hydraulic tensile test machine was constructed to measure the mechanical properties of engineering components.

The moto of Kirkaldy’s test house was “Facts not opinions”.

The Kirkaldy works tested components for the 1874 Eads Bridge across the Mississippi River, and for the Skylon that was built for the nearby Festival of Britain in 1951. It also helped accident analysis by tested materials from structures that failed, including the Tay Bridge Disaster of 1879 and the BOAC Flight 781 De Havilland Comet crash of 1954.

Eads Bridge, St Louis

Eads Bridge, St Louis (image from wikipedia)

The Skylon

The Skylon (image from wikipedia).

LIberal Doublespeak – paying more is paying less

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11946112

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11947701

Liberal democrats are claiming that students who will pay more for their education in the future will be paying less.

Their argument seems to be that the longer you delay paying back a loan, and the slower you pay it back the better.

I’m a bit worried that politicians can make this argument so easily, I think this is the same way they think about borrowing on the national scale. At least on the national scale one thing they often seem to forget is that the cost of borrowing can change.

I think it is very disingenuous to claim that richer students will pay more for their loans because they will pay them back sooner. Also does this mean no one will have a choice but to borrow to pay for their education, will it be compulsory to take loans from the government, or will students be allowed to pay upfront if they have the money? Paddy Ashdown seemed to claim that no one will pay for their education (only pay it back later).

Did we enter the world of double speak?

If anyone knows where I can read the proposals for this legislation please let me know. Mr Ashdown suggested we should read, but didn’t say where.

Corus Symposium

On 11th-12th April 2007 I attented the first annual Corus-Academia Symposium, which was held at a previous residence of mine, Tapton Hall in Sheffield.

It was really good to see this event being organised by Corus, bringing together many of the students they sponsor and research staff from academia and industrial researchers. I would recommend any company in a similar situation to organise a similar event – I think it succeeded in benefiting both the students and the company. The conference was held over two days, starting at 11 am and ending at 2 pm. This gave time to travel to and from Sheffield without too much trouble, or atleast it wasn’t too difficult to get there and back on the train from Cambridge.

There were 18 oral presentations were made in 4 sessions and around 30 posters presented.

Lecture at Corus Syposium
Click to see more photographs

The poster I presented at the symposium was based on my phd work, titled Bulk Nanocrystalline Steel. During presentation of the best poster award, the first thing that one of the organisers said is that the poster should have the name of the author, and sponsors, so I don’t think they were impressed by my attempt to comunicate only the important information. Probably to keep this style I should have had another small sign with my name and photograph on it, however my name was in the progamme, and Corus should know who in their company is working on what projects. One thing that did upset me is that I thought I would be able to stand next too my poster to talk to anyone who was interested during the poster sessions, this was overly optimistic, and made difficult by the layout of the poster stands. I did manage to talk to a few people about my work, I think the poster atleast succeeded in being a good starting point for a discusison.

Conference Programme

Wednesday IIth April
11:00 Registration desk open Tea / coffee Loading of oral presentations and erection of posters
12:00 POSTER SESSION in dining hall with buffet lunch
Chair Prof. Rob Boom
13:00 SESSION 1
• Welcome / Corus Prof. Rob Boom
• Welcome/Sheffield Prof Mark Rainforth
• Strain induced precipitation in multipass rolling Vishwa Nagarajan
• Internal stresses in steels Ellie Clarke
• Development of bimodal grain sizes in TMCR Debalay Chakrabarty

• Microstructure & toughness of high strength, hot rolled strip steels Eric Maina
• An application of Kinetic Monte Carlo techniques in the modelling of strain ageing
Alex Gator
• Damage evolution in Free Cutting Steels Alistair Foster
15:30 Tea & Coffee, conservatory
16:00 SESSION 2 Chair Dr Peter Morris
• The non-contact ultrasonic inspection of hot, moving steel Iain Baillie
• Ultrasonic measurement of liquid steel cleanness Alex Currie
• Acoustic diagnostics in a hot strip mill David Murray
• What non-contact sensors can offer to the steel industry in terms of material characterisation Dr Claire Davis
17:30 Close
19:00 Bar
19:30 Dinner

Thursday I2th April
09:00 SESSIONS Chair Prof Andy Howe
• Overview of Corus research at NIMR Dr Rene Duursma
• Rapid testing of organic coating degradation using FTIR Jen Wray
• Flame-assisted CVD Paul Youngson
• Fine-scale mapping for environmental analysis Kevin Jackson
10:30 POSTER SESSION in dining hall with tea/coffee
11:20 SESSION 4 Chair Dr Tony Jones
• A hot strip mill work roll temperature model Daniel White
• The performance on non-sharp defects in service Anthony Horn
• Characterisation of connection mechanisms within road safety barriers Andrew Bayton
• Behaviour of composite structures during the cooling phase of a fire Charlotte Roben
• Symposium wrap-up Dr Tony Jones
13:00 Buffet Lunch & prizes
14:00 Close / Posters down

POSTERS: Wednesday 11*, 12-13:00, and Thursday 12th, 10:30-11:20
Iain Baillie, Corus/Warwick: The non-contact ultrasonic inspection of hot, moving steel
Arghya Deys, Sheffield: The Interactions of Zirconia Particles and other Inclusions of Liquid Steel with Zirconia Based SEN Walls
Tim Evans, Birmingham: Concentrations of PCBs and Chiral signatures of matched air and soil samples on a global scale
Xinjiang Hao, Birmingham: Multi-frequency electromagnetic sensors for the measurement of microstructure
Andrey Kostryzhev, B’ham: Role of precipitates on Bauschinger effect in large diameter
steel pipe processing
Huan Li, Birmingham: Modelling of mechanical property and damage recovery for a
pipe steel in annealing process
Ed Marsden, Corus/Sheffield: Thermal neutron detectors for security applications
Glyn Martin, Swansea: Factors influencing the long term durability of coated products in worldwide climates
Mayorkinos Papaelios, B’ham: Rail research at the University of Birmingham
Mathew Peet, Cambridge: Tempering of Low temperature Bainite
John Pillai, Greenwich: Results from plant trails to evaluate on-line wall friction tester
Mark Potter, Warwick Ultrasonic texture measurement of strip (UTMOST)
Guixiang Qin Microstructural evolution analysis on an E911 steel using the Leicester: EBSD method
Jody Turner, Sheffield Metallurgical sub-structure development in multipass rolling

Others expected :-
Yoseph Tefasse, Cranfield: Rolling system design optimisation using thermal and soft computing technique
Bin Kamal, Sheffield: Monitoring Airborne Pollution using Tree Bark –
Dmitry Borisoglebsky, C’field: Incorporation of cost modelling into process simulation
Natalie Kaniuka, Salford: Atmospheric pressure plasma CVD of SiON
Richard Wood, Cardiff: Processing routes of electrical steels
Ben Ward, Sheffield Hallam: Organic coatings based on polymer-clay nano-composites
Chris Taylor, Swansea: Analysis of run-off from coated organic steels
Stephen Essex, Warwick: Ultrasonic characterisation of texture in aluminium sheet in correlation with electron back-scatter diffraction
Yichao Fan, Warwick: Crack depth measurements using non-contact ultrasound
Ed Marsden, Corus/Sheffield: Large Area High Efficiency Neutron Detector
Stephen Turner, Cardiff: Grain-to-Grain Field and Loss Variation in Electrical Steel
Christopher Vardon, Cardiff: Domains and microstructures in electrical steel

Tony Blair talks about the importance of scientists for the future of Britain

New scientist Editor Jeremy Webb has interviewed prime minister Tony Blair in a podcast. The prime minister talks about the importance of scientists to the future of the economy of Britain. He says scientists need to engage more with the public and with industry to exploit scientific ideas.

Tony Blair and George Bush

The interview discusses issues including links between academia and industry, ethics, stem cell research, MMR vaccine, animal testing, nuclear power, carbon dioxide emissions, genetically modified foods, creationism, and faith schools. Continue reading

Metallurgist Shortage?

UK atomic weopons establishment (AWE) says there is a shortage of qualified metallurgists, and is looking for a partner organisations to set up courses in metallurgy (MSc and short courses). It is also recruiting personnel with qualifications in materials science, materials engineeing and chemistry to be trained in-house. Working with IOM3 who will establish the scale of the problem, find other industrial partners, identify academic institutions that might want to be involved in providing courses. With IOM3 independently co-ordinating and accrediting course material. A one day open discussion workshop will be held at 1 Carlton House terrace on 7th November 2006 to establish the key issues and identify the interested parties. (contact details in material world June 2006 p11).

Is it really true that there is a shortage of metallurgists, or do they just have skills when leaving university that enable them to work in other areas?

Do the people leaving courses in materials science have the necessary skills? Or is it necessary to have an undergraduate or graduate degree in metallurgy.

I know at sheffield is was possible for me to take a degree either in metallurgy or materials science depending on which set of final exams I took (with almost the same courses for 4 years).