Experiments Yield Knowledge of Resilient Materials in Ruthless Environments

Bilge Yildiz, associate professor of nuclear science and engineering and principal investigator of the Laboratory for Electrochemical Interfaces, has looked at surface materials in severe environments and discovered materials that remain durable in such environments.

Conducting tests on certain materials in order to determine the speed of corrosion proves difficult; therefore, Yildiz designed a scanning microscope that can function in high temperatures up to 600 degrees Celsius and make the process of probing materials surfaces in harsh environments easier. This device has allowed Yildiz to intently study pyrite.

One study conducted by Yildiz proves that pyrite is a material in which corrosion would only occur very slowly. By looking at pyrite’s surface, Yildiz found that it easily transfers electrons, forms defects, and can accelerate corrosion. This gap exists, and, by knowing this, smarter choices can now be made.”

“It’s very important input in designing and developing models to predict the rates at which these materials would corrode and ultimately degrade and fracture,” Yidiz said.


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