The research is based on the characterization of metallic materials through high resolution electron microscopy and micro-analytical techniques. The investigated materials are mainly devoted to applications for energy production and components for high temperature and extreme conditions (Milan branch), and metal functional materials (Lecco branch).
The design of components, operating under demanding conditions of stress and temperature, requires the use of constitutive equations able to describe the mechanical behaviour of materials.
The development of such equations, based on physical modelling of damage and deformation of metals and alloys, is one of the main task in Milan branch of ICMATE.
New metallic materials or composites are studied and developed.
A unique combination of melting furnaces and metal working facilities (rolling, forging, drawing) allows laboratory-sized or small-sized production for subsequent testing or use in special application.
Numerous materials have been produced and characterised, among which titanium alloys, copper based foams, aluminium based composites, shape memory alloys, refractory alloys, precious metals, and biodegradable metals.
The main activity is focused on the production and processing of metallic materials through advanced manufacturing processes, mainly based on laser technology.
Shape memory alloys (SMA) are intermetallic compounds that exhibit extraordinary thermo-mechanical properties such as: the superelasticity and the shape memory effect. SMA functional performances are correlated to the composition as well as the microstructure induced during the material processing. For the developing of SMA components for practical applications all the processing steps, melting, hot and cold working and final training have to be controlled strictly to guarantee the programmed smart characteristics.
Lecco Unit has skills in the design and realization of active/passive devices and components based on Shape Memory Alloys (by CAD 2D and 3D softwares, 3D prototyping, lathes and countersinks, and numerical simulation), in the calorimetric and chemical-physical analysis of the single SMA element, and in the functional characterization of the final device by the realization of specific experimental set-up.
Applications of functional materials in technologies and methods for neurorehabilitation and neuroscience
Neurorehabilitation can be looked at as a strategic research field because of its tight interconnections with topics of great economic and social relevance, such as healthy and active ageing, wellbeing and the social inclusion of people with disabilities.
The introduction of innovative materials and technologies in this field is leading to a better and more sustainable management of care
Studies of the physico-chemical properties of the solid-liquid interfaces at high temperatures, in particular wetting and reactivity, and of the related mechanisms.
High-tech devices require the development of components with different structures and complementary properties that are assembled into a final product either mechanically or by physical-chemical processes related to the tailoring of interfaces and design of novel structural and functional materials. The key role of interfaces and surfaces in determining performances and reliability of a new composite multilayer material is evident.
The research activity of the group in Milan has been focusing in the field of high temperature alloys since the early ‘70 gaining an extensive experience in lifetime investigation involving creep, stress relaxation, low cycle and thermo-mechanical fatigue and crack propagation testing.