Takeuchi, Hunter in Nature CommunicationsIn a paper published in the November 2 issue of Nature Communications, a team of researchers led by Department of Materials Science and Engineering Professor Ichiro Takeuchi and alumnus Dwight Hunter (Ph.D. '11, formerly advised by Takeuchi), reported the discovery of large magnetostriction in an iron/cobalt alloy—in other words, the alloy shows a mechanical strain when a magnetic field is applied.
This property is sought after in materials with good mechanical properties for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), sensors and actuators. However, magnetostrictive materials are usually based on rare or difficult-to-obtain materials, so scientists have been looking for alternatives based on common, cheap and widely available elements.
The team was able to enhance the magnetostriction of the alloy by more than a factor of 3, and it appears that the mechanism by which they were able to enhance the magnetostriction can be used to discover even better magnetostriction properties in alloys of common metals.
Takeuchi and Hunter's co-authors included MSE professor Manfred Wuttig, MSE graduate student Richard Suchoski and former MSE postdoctoral research associate Ryota Takahashi; Will Osborn, Ke Wang, alumnus Jason Hattrick-Simpers (Ph.D. '07), and Leonid A. Bendersky, representing NIST; Apurva Mehta (Stanford University), Nataliya Kazantseva (Urals Branch of the Academy of Sciences, Russia); Marcus L. Young (Oregon State University); and Sam E. Lofland (Rowan University).
The research was also featured on Physorg.com.