Published on Monday June 5, 2006
Ph.D. student Siddhartha Pathak (advisor: Surya Kalidindi) is the Grand Prize Winner of the 50th International Conference on Electron, Ion and Photon Beam Technology Nanofabrication Bizarre/Beautiful Micrograph Contest. A total of 81 entries were submitted to the contest.
Pathak’s image shows layered steps inside closed pores in La0.8Ca0.2CoO3 revealed by fracture. During sintering, if the surface adjacent to the pore is smooth (generally the closed-packed-planes), then this represents a difficult and slow situation for further growth. The final grain shape is determined by these slow-growing facetted layers. Lanthanum cobaltite based perovskites are important materials for use as catalysts, oxygen separation membranes and solid oxide fuel cells. This work was done at the High Temperature Materials Laboratory (HTML) at Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL) under the SURA (Southeastern Universities Research Association)/ORNL Summer 2005 Program in Materials Research.