Q&A with MTU Research Award Winner Gregory Odegard

The 2021 Michigan Tech Study Award winner develops ultrastrong composite resources for crewed deep house

The 2021 Michigan Tech Study Award winner develops ultrastrong composite resources
for crewed deep house missions.

Composites are substantially like they sound: resources composed of different substances. Their
factors can greatly enhance their general toughness, toughness, excess weight and other houses
these types of as electrical conductivity. For case in point, deep house exploration demands composites
that are equally lightweight but exceptionally strong.

Which is why Greg Odegard received 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 prospects the NASA Institute for Ultra-Solid Composites by Computational Style (US-COMP) and the Tech Forward initiative for State-of-the-art Materials and Producing. Odegard specially studies ultrastrong carbon-nanotube-dependent composites, and he
details out that not all carbon is equivalent. Whilst all sporting a large C chemically, the
delicate sheets of graphite vary from the rigid toughness of diamond and the flexibility
and electrical houses of graphene.

In its lots of varieties, carbon can perform in lots of means — and the tough aspect with composites
is figuring out how different resources interact. Computational simulation is modern-day
alchemy and Odegard works by using modeling to predict what resources to mix, how substantially and
irrespective of whether they’ll stand up to the depths of house.

“Dr. Odegard has designed a substantial impression in the discipline of composite resources research
via his groundbreaking perform making use of computational modeling strategies that url the
impact of molecular framework on bulk houses.”Janet Callahan, dean of the Higher education of Engineering

Q: What is the large photograph of your research?

GO: Acquiring new resources for aerospace apps is extremely highly-priced and time-consuming.
My group works by using computational simulation to facilitate this approach so we can quickly
style, characterize and make these new resources.

Q: What is the principal target of your perform proper now?

GO: We are making use of computational simulation to help acquire the subsequent technology of composite
resources for crewed missions to deep house. We are doing the job with a large multi-college
group on a NASA challenge to style, acquire and examination these new resources. This perform
is all aspect of the NASA Institute for Ultra-Solid Composites by Computational Style
(US-COMP), which obtained a $15 million dollar grant in 2017.

Q: Where by did you get the inspiration for the challenge?

GO: NASA is shifting some of its research target from very low-Earth orbit to deep house
exploration. To empower deep house missions with crews, NASA scientists understand
they will need new developing resources for cars, habitats and ability units that
are lighter and stronger than those out there nowadays. I am extremely enthusiastic to be in a position
to use my team’s computational simulation knowledge to help NASA acquire these resources.

Q: How have your solutions aided make the challenge successful?

GO: We have been in a position to help the product suppliers for these composite resources,
typically resin and carbon nanotube manufacturers, to understand the strengths and weaknesses
of their resources. We have also aided them understand how to make improvements to their resources
for far more exceptional general performance.

Study Stats

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

Q: What do you discover most exciting about your perform?

GO: With out a doubt, I have the most fun doing the job with my graduate learners and the
broader US-COMP group. Our complete group is enthusiastic about the research and our development,
and this will make for some of the greatest research conferences I have experienced in my career.
As we get nearer to our research plans, the group gets increasingly enthusiastic and engaged.

Q: Who benefits from the research?

GO: Not only does NASA and the composite product market gain from this research,
but there is another gain to US-COMP’s perform that I lately noticed. With our
large group and recurrent interaction, I sense we have aided pioneer a new paradigm
in large-scale interactions. We have progressed our group, which is scattered across the
state from a number of universities and government labs, into a restricted-knit group that
meets on a each day foundation to resolve a very elaborate trouble. I like to believe of it as
a modern-day Manhattan Job for composite resources.

“International recognition of Dr. Odegard’s sustained effective research endeavors
and groundbreaking research strategies in computational modeling exemplify the substantial regular
of research accomplishment listed here at Michigan Tech.”Bill Predebon, chair of the Office of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Q: What are the worries you confronted?

GO: The most critical lesson I have uncovered is that the key to good results in large initiatives
is steady and engaging conversation. As the chief of a large challenge, I have
uncovered that my most critical task is to make confident all of the scientists, learners
and software managers are actively speaking with every other on their development,
roadblocks and requires. Even if it usually means I have to show up at plenty of conferences to facilitate
this dialogue, it is a necessary necessity of a chief for a successful challenge
end result.

Michigan Technological College is a general public research college, dwelling to far more than
7,000 learners from 54 countries. Established in 1885, the College delivers far more than
one hundred twenty undergraduate and graduate degree plans in science and technological innovation, engineering,
forestry, business enterprise and economics, well being professions, humanities, arithmetic, and
social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Higher Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway
and is just a couple miles from Lake Excellent.