Northwestern University Planning Grant: I/UCRC for Industry/University metal deFOrmation Center for US (iuFOCUS)

Project: Research project

Project Details


1. Mission and vision: To create a robust and sustainable center across several industrial sectors that delivers pre-competitive, fundamental knowledge in the overarching area of metal deformation processes. The specific goals for iuFOCUS are to provide: a) accurate experimental characterization of material microstructures and material behavior for use in modeling efforts; b) robust modeling capabilities that are integrated across and specific to various length scales; c) standardization of material libraries and databases; and d) innovative forming technologies, both processes and sensors, to aid advanced manufacturing. 2. Fit of Center within collaborative scope: There are several organizations and conferences focused on metal deformation processes that span industry and academia, e.g., NADDRG, NUMIFORM, ESAFORM, etc. The PIs in iuFOCUS are heavily involved in these conferences and groups. Furthermore, a NIST-funded AMTech consortium roadmapping effort (PI: Cao of Northwestern with UNH and TAMU involved) on sheet metal forming was completed which included a successful workshop with over 70 participants from almost equal number of participants from industry and academia. This AMTech award provides a solid foundation for iuFOCUS and we will expand the topic area to include processes, e.g., forging, extrusion, rolling, etc. 3. Economic relevance of area: Metal deformation processes are a ubiquitous manufacturing technique used in several industrial sectors, e.g., from food/beverage containers to automobiles to medical/electronic devices to oil/gas to aerospace applications. Metal deformation processes are involved in approximately 7% of the US GDP. Furthermore, in the 2012 report on the state of advanced manufacturing in the US, the Presidents Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) identified advanced forming (and joining) technologies as one of the eleven focus areas. 4. Analysis of possible overlap with other I/UCRCs and uniqueness: The only existing I/UCRC that has a remote overlap with iuFOCUS is the Center for Advanced Non-Ferrous Structural Alloys. However, their technical focus is on materials development and metallurgy for non-ferrous alloys while our technical focus is different as noted above.
Effective start/end date7/15/166/30/17


  • National Science Foundation (IIP-1624823)


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