Swedish Material Sciences in Microgravity
Essentially all Swedish microgravity research is carried out experimentally within the framework of the ESA microgravity programs EMIR and ELIPS. These programs have offered Swedish researchers opportunities on parabolic aircraft flights, sounding rockets and manned flights in the US and Russian programs.
Understanding the formation of non-aqueous foams is of importance in processes such as destillation. A research group at the Institute for Surface Chemistry (Kronberg et al.) takes advantage of the fact that transient foams have increased stability in microgravity due to reduced drainage of the fluid. For further information, see YKI/Foam. There is also new work both on metallic foams both at the Institute for Surface Chemistry and at the Royal Institute of technology (Kronberg and Fredriksson, respectively).
Semiconductors, Crystal Growth
Future semiconductor materials are studied by Torbjörn Carlberg at the Mid Sweden University. Crystal growth is done by zone melting and Bridgman techniques to understand the influence of convection on dopant distribution in grown material. Especially the coupling between weak convection and radial segregation is studied.
A group at Linköping University is studying the growth of SiC in microgravity.
A research group at the Royal University of Technology in Stockholm (Fredriksson) is studying the formation of lattice defects during the solidification process and liquid phase sintering of alloys in microgravity conditions.
Thermophysical Properties of Silicate Melts
A research group at the Division of Metallurgy, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), is involved in a European effort study thermophysical properties of silicate melts, which is of great interest for industrial applications. For further information, see KTH/metallurgy.
9 November 2010