MAE Seminar Series

Advanced Material Processing Techniques for Wettability Modification and Vehicle Lightweighting

Avik Samanta.

Avik Samanta

Post Doctorate Research Associate, Applied Materials and Manufacturing, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)

March 6, 2023 | 3:30 p.m. | 325 Bell Hall


Advanced manufacturing methods have given rise to countless applications in diverse fields, such as aerospace, vehicle technology, energy harvesting, sensing, and decarbonization. Combining multiple functionalities in a single component increases complexity in fabrication and demands innovation in material processing. This talk includes two material processing techniques to modify material properties for specific applications. The first technique consists of a fast laser-based processing method for wettability modulation by controlling the surface structures and chemistry. It leads to various extreme wettabilities, including superhydrophobicity, superhydrophilicity, superwicking, and wettability patterning. We have used the textured surface to enhance catalytic activity, anti-icing capability, and corrosion resistance. The second technique incorporates solid-state friction stir processing (FSP). This thermomechanical processing tool is applied on high-pressure die-cast (HPDC) Al-alloys. HPDC Al-alloys are increasingly used in vehicle structural components for glider weight reduction and part unitizing to achieve greater fuel efficiency and lower carbon emission. FSP-driven microstructure modification results in enhanced yield strength, ductility, fatigue life, and fracture toughness, suggesting the possible scope of lightweighting for vehicles.


Avik Samanta is a Post Doctorate Research Associate in the Applied Materials and Manufacturing group at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, Washington. His research interest encompasses the advanced manufacturing of metal and metal alloys, semiconductor materials, catalysts, and metamaterials, through laser-based surface engineering, solid-state processing, and additive manufacturing. In addition, his research focuses on developing novel processing methods and understanding the fundamentals to contribute towards reducing carbon emissions and improving energy efficiency. He received his doctoral degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, in 2020. He is the recipient of the outstanding teaching assistant award, the RSN Planjery research award, and the graduate college research fellowship during his doctoral degree at the University of Iowa. He received his bachelor's and master's degree with honors from the Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India and the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai, India, respectively. He was also associated with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company in Hsinchu, Taiwan as a product engineer before his doctoral study, where he was awarded the outstanding engineer award.

Event Date: March 6, 2023