Q&A with MTU Research Award Winner Gregory Odegard

Maria J. Danford

The 2021 Michigan Tech Analysis Award winner develops ultrastrong composite materials
for crewed deep room missions.

Composites are much like they sound: materials composed of various substances. Their
parts can boost their over-all toughness, toughness, weight and other attributes
this kind of as electrical conductivity. For illustration, deep room exploration requires composites
that are both equally lightweight but incredibly potent.

That is why Greg Odegard bought into carbon.

Odegard is the John O. Hallquist Endowed Chair in Computational Mechanics in the Office
of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological College.
He also sales opportunities the NASA Institute for Ultra-Solid Composites by Computational Design (US-COMP) and the Tech Ahead initiative for Advanced Supplies and Manufacturing. Odegard precisely experiments ultrastrong carbon-nanotube-centered composites, and he
factors out that not all carbon is equal. When all sporting a huge C chemically, the
soft sheets of graphite vary from the rigid toughness of diamond and the overall flexibility
and electrical attributes of graphene.

In its several sorts, carbon can perform in several ways — and the tricky element with composites
is figuring out how various materials interact. Computational simulation is contemporary
alchemy and Odegard utilizes modeling to forecast what materials to merge, how much and
irrespective of whether they’ll stand up to the depths of room.

“Dr. Odegard has made a considerable influence in the area of composite materials study
through his revolutionary work utilizing computational modeling strategies that backlink the
affect of molecular construction on bulk attributes.”Janet Callahan, dean of the University of Engineering

Q: What is the huge image of your study?

GO: Establishing new materials for aerospace applications is very expensive and time-consuming.
My workforce utilizes computational simulation to aid this method so we can speedily
design and style, characterize and make these new materials.

Q: What is the major focus of your work proper now?

GO: We are utilizing computational simulation to enable create the up coming technology of composite
materials for crewed missions to deep room. We are operating with a big multi-university
workforce on a NASA task to design and style, create and check these new materials. This work
is all element of the NASA Institute for Ultra-Solid Composites by Computational Design
(US-COMP), which gained a $fifteen million dollar grant in 2017.

Q: In which did you get the inspiration for the task?

GO: NASA is shifting some of its study focus from low-Earth orbit to deep room
exploration. To help deep room missions with crews, NASA scientists fully grasp
they will need to have new making materials for vehicles, habitats and electricity methods that
are lighter and stronger than those obtainable today. I am very psyched to be equipped
to use my team’s computational simulation abilities to enable NASA create these materials.

Q: How have your procedures served make the task successful?

GO: We have been equipped to enable the content suppliers for these composite materials,
generally resin and carbon nanotube manufacturers, to fully grasp the strengths and weaknesses
of their materials. We have also served them fully grasp how to strengthen their materials
for additional best functionality.

Analysis Stats

  • 104 journal publications
  • More than four dozen graduate and doctoral learners
  • 907 citations on most-cited paper
  • More than $21 million in study funding

Q: What do you discover most fascinating about your work?

GO: Devoid of a doubt, I have the most pleasurable operating with my graduate learners and the
broader US-COMP workforce. Our entire workforce is psyched about the study and our progress,
and this can make for some of the most effective study meetings I have skilled in my job.
As we get closer to our study goals, the workforce will get progressively psyched and engaged.

Q: Who benefits from the study?

GO: Not only does NASA and the composite content market reward from this study,
but there is a different reward to US-COMP’s work that I recently observed. With our
big workforce and frequent conversation, I sense we have served pioneer a new paradigm
in big-scale interactions. We have advanced our workforce, which is scattered throughout the
state from many universities and governing administration labs, into a limited-knit group that
fulfills on a everyday basis to resolve a very intricate trouble. I like to consider of it as
a contemporary Manhattan Job for composite materials.

“Intercontinental recognition of Dr. Odegard’s sustained successful study endeavors
and revolutionary study strategies in computational modeling exemplify the significant regular
of study achievement in this article at Michigan Tech.”Bill Predebon, chair of the Office of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Q: What are the troubles you faced?

GO: The most essential lesson I have figured out is that the key to success in big tasks
is steady and engaging interaction. As the leader of a big task, I have
figured out that my most essential activity is to make sure all of the scientists, learners
and plan supervisors are actively speaking with each other on their progress,
roadblocks and requires. Even if it indicates I have to go to innumerable meetings to aid
this conversation, it is a essential need of a leader for a successful task
final result.

Michigan Technological College is a public study university, dwelling to additional than
7,000 learners from fifty four nations. Founded in 1885, the College gives additional than
one hundred twenty undergraduate and graduate diploma systems in science and engineering, engineering,
forestry, small business and economics, wellbeing professions, humanities, arithmetic, and
social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway
and is just a number of miles from Lake Excellent.

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