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Professor:Yasuo Kogo
Assistant professor:Masashi Ishikawa

Composite materials with plastic matrix as well as high temperature matrix such as ceramics or carbon have been studied in our laboratory. These materials are promising candidate materials mainly for aerospace applications. Through investigation of the relation between processing conditions and various properties such as mechanical, thermal, and environmental ones, we are aiming at development of new composite materials with superior performances.
Based on the analytical and experimental techniques used in the composite research, analysis and design on thermo-electric (TE) devices have been also studied to understand thermo-structural reliability of the devices and to develop highly reliable new architectures for the TE devices. This is another topic expanding research to the energy field.

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Example study

1

Development of ultra-high temperature ceramics (UHTC) and their composites has been studied. The ceramics, which incorporate two or more high temperature ceramics such as ZrB2, ZrC, HfB2, HfC, and SiC, is fabricated, and the anti-oxidation, thermal, and mechanical properties are examined with reference to compositions of ceramics and/or processing conditions. Through these experiments, development of highly heat-resistant materials is expected to apply for the space structures, which requires extremely high heat resistance such as rocket nozzles, and heat shield for re-entry vehicles. In addition, carbon fiber reinforced carbon composites are also investigated as a carbon-based high temperature material.

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2

Development of porous materials has been investigated. One of the applications is CFRP sandwich-panels for space structures requiring high structural precision, such as a mirror of telescopes mounted on the satellites. Application of the plastic porous materials is expected to suppress surface roughness of CFRP mirrors significantly.
As an application of carbon porous materials, development of a heat resistant material so called “ablator” has been examined. Since it will be applied for the heat shield of re-entry vehicles, the material will be exposed to extremely high heat input environments, though short period of time. Ultra-light weight is one of the important aspects as a material for space structures.

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3

Experimental and analytical investigations have been carried out aiming at development of highly reliable thermo-electric (TE) modules. Fundamental materials properties are measured for materials for TE devices. Based on these data, reliabilities of TE device structures are assessed through thermo-structural analysis. Development of the highly reliable new device structure is final goal of this research.

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