By using this process, Smith and his fellow researchers were able to reduce the formation of “nano twin” defects by half. In turn, these alloys can be exposed to higher temperatures and pressures without deforming.

Smith completed this research during his PhD program at The Ohio State and is now working as a research materials engineer at NASA Glenn Research Center. His co-authors included Robert Williams, assistant director of CEMAS; Wolfgang Windl, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering; Hamish Fraser, Ohio Eminent Scholar and Professor of Materials Science and Engineering; and doctoral students Bryan Esser and Nikolas Antolin, all of Ohio State; Anna Carlsson of FEI/Thermo Fisher Scientific; and Andrew Wessman of GE.

Reference: Smith, T. M., Esser, B. D., Antolin, N., Carlsson, A., Williams, R. E. A., Wessman, A., Hanlon, T., Fraser, H. L., Windl, W., McComb, D. W. and Mills, M. J. (2016) ‘Phase transformation strengthening of high-temperature superalloys’, Nature Communications. The Author(s), 7, p. 13434. Available at: