Q&A with MTU Research Award Winner Gregory Odegard

The 2021 Michigan Tech Research Award winner develops ultrastrong composite resources
for crewed deep area missions.

Composites are a great deal like they seem: resources composed of diverse substances. Their
factors can enhance their all round strength, toughness, pounds and other properties
this kind of as electrical conductivity. For illustration, deep area exploration needs composites
that are the two light-weight but amazingly sturdy.

Which is why Greg Odegard got into carbon.

Odegard is the John O. Hallquist Endowed Chair in Computational Mechanics in the Division
of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological University.
He also qualified prospects the NASA Institute for Extremely-Sturdy Composites by Computational Design (US-COMP) and the Tech Forward initiative for Advanced Materials and Manufacturing. Odegard particularly research ultrastrong carbon-nanotube-based mostly composites, and he
details out that not all carbon is equal. Although all sporting a huge C chemically, the
smooth sheets of graphite differ from the rigid strength of diamond and the overall flexibility
and electrical properties of graphene.

In its quite a few kinds, carbon can complete in quite a few ways — and the tough element with composites
is figuring out how diverse resources interact. Computational simulation is modern day
alchemy and Odegard makes use of modeling to forecast what resources to combine, how a great deal and
irrespective of whether they’ll stand up to the depths of area.

“Dr. Odegard has made a sizeable effects in the field of composite resources research
by his revolutionary function applying computational modeling strategies that website link the
affect of molecular construction on bulk properties.”Janet Callahan, dean of the College of Engineering

Q: What is the huge photograph of your research?

GO: Producing new resources for aerospace apps is very highly-priced and time-consuming.
My workforce makes use of computational simulation to aid this procedure so we can swiftly
layout, characterize and create these new resources.

Q: What is the major emphasis of your function suitable now?

GO: We are applying computational simulation to support produce the upcoming technology of composite
resources for crewed missions to deep area. We are doing work with a large multi-university
workforce on a NASA project to layout, produce and check these new resources. This function
is all element of the NASA Institute for Extremely-Sturdy Composites by Computational Design
(US-COMP), which acquired a $15 million greenback grant in 2017.

Q: Exactly where did you get the inspiration for the project?

GO: NASA is shifting some of its research emphasis from small-Earth orbit to deep area
exploration. To help deep area missions with crews, NASA scientists have an understanding of
they will need to have new constructing resources for cars, habitats and ability programs that
are lighter and more robust than people obtainable right now. I am very fired up to be in a position
to use my team’s computational simulation experience to support NASA produce these resources.

Q: How have your strategies assisted make the project profitable?

GO: We have been in a position to support the product suppliers for these composite resources,
mostly resin and carbon nanotube suppliers, to have an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses
of their resources. We have also assisted them have an understanding of how to enhance their resources
for a lot more optimum efficiency.

Research 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 locate most intriguing about your function?

GO: Without having a question, I have the most enjoyable doing work with my graduate learners and the
broader US-COMP workforce. Our whole workforce is fired up about the research and our development,
and this tends to make for some of the greatest research conferences I have seasoned in my job.
As we get closer to our research targets, the workforce gets significantly fired up and engaged.

Q: Who rewards from the research?

GO: Not only does NASA and the composite product marketplace gain from this research,
but there is a further gain to US-COMP’s function that I a short while ago observed. With our
large workforce and repeated conversation, I truly feel we have assisted pioneer a new paradigm
in large-scale interactions. We have developed our workforce, which is scattered across the
region from a number of universities and federal government labs, into a restricted-knit group that
meets on a each day foundation to remedy a hugely sophisticated challenge. I like to consider of it as
a modern day Manhattan Undertaking for composite resources.

“International recognition of Dr. Odegard’s sustained productive research endeavors
and revolutionary research strategies in computational modeling exemplify the large common
of research accomplishment here at Michigan Tech.”Invoice Predebon, chair of the Division of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Q: What are the challenges you faced?

GO: The most essential lesson I have figured out is that the essential to good results in large jobs
is constant and engaging interaction. As the leader of a large project, I have
figured out that my most essential undertaking is to make absolutely sure all of the scientists, learners
and plan managers are actively speaking with just about every other on their development,
roadblocks and wants. Even if it suggests I have to attend a great number of conferences to aid
this discussion, it is a vital necessity of a leader for a profitable project
final result.

Michigan Technological University is a public research university, dwelling to a lot more than
7,000 learners from fifty four nations around the world. Founded in 1885, the University features a lot more than
a hundred and twenty undergraduate and graduate diploma packages in science and technological innovation, engineering,
forestry, business and economics, health and fitness professions, humanities, mathematics, and
social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Higher Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway
and is just a few miles from Lake Excellent.