March 10, 2023 New Vilas Associates Award to Lianyi Chen Written By: Caitlin Scott Departments: Mechanical Engineering Categories: Awards|Faculty|Research Congratulations to Mechanical Engineering Charles Ringrose Associate Professor Lianyi Chen on his Vilas Associates Award! In his project, Metals Processing and Design Based on Nanoelements, Chen plans to initiate a new line of research on the use of nanoelements (nanoscale particles/wires/sheets) to enhance material properties of 3D printed structures. He will explore new approaches to disperse nanoparticles in molten metal which is a long-standing challenge in the field. The proposed research is highly interdisciplinary and will leverage resources at UW and specialized facilities at National Labs. Chen is an international leader in metal additive manufacturing. He has pioneered the use of synchrotron-based techniques to investigate the physics of additive manufacturing processes. Synchrotron facilities around the world are now increasingly adopting this approach. This work is critical to enhance the fundamental understanding of molten metal processes in 3D printing, which dictate material properties and suitability for demanding applications in the aerospace, energy, medical and automotive industries. The results from this proposed research will set the foundation for Chen to establish a new paradigm for metals processing and design based on nanoelements to overcome the limitations of the traditional alloy development paradigm based on the periodic table of elements. The Vilas Associates Competition recognizes new and on-going research of the highest quality and significance. Recipients are chosen competitively by the divisional Research Committees on the basis of a detailed proposal. Read more about Prof. Chen’s work.