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Richard J. Smith
Department of Physics
Dr. Richard J. Smith is a Professor of Physics in the Department of Physics at Montana State University. He received a B.A. in Physics from St. Mary's College, Winona, Minn., (1969) and a Ph.D. in Solid State Physics from Iowa State University (1975). After three years on a postdoctoral appointment at Montana State University, he joined the research staff at Brookhaven National Laboratory. He returned to MSU as a faculty member in 1980.
He is currently director and principal investigator in the Ion Beams Laboratory at MSU. Dr. Smith directs a group of several undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral associates in two separate programs funded by NSF and DOE (HiTEC). Research interests include: epitaxial growth at metal-metal interfaces, formation of intermetallic alloys at surfaces and interfaces, corrosion of metal surfaces, degradation of materials in solid oxide fuel cells, the absorption of hydrogen in metals, and ion-solid interactions including ion beam mixing, channeling, and nuclear reaction analysis. He is the author/co-author of over 100 publications and has served as PI on many federally funded projects. His teaching interests include instruction of introductory engineering physics classes and the development of improved upper division laboratories.
Project Summary: Advanced Surface Engineering for SOFC Components
Since the beginning of the HiTEC program at MSU, Dr. Smith’s program has consisted of a collaborative effort with Dr. Vladimir Gorokhovsky, Arcomac Surface Engineering Inc. of Bozeman, Mont., to use advanced surface engineering techniques to fabricate low-cost, corrosion resistant bipolar plates for SOFC stacks operating at temperatures near 800 degrees Celsius. The approach has been to use large-area filtered arc deposition technology (LAFAD) available from ASE to coat steel interconnect plates, and to characterize the performance of the plates by their area-specific resistance (ASR) in the group of Dr. Max Deibert (Chemical Engineering, MSU), and their oxidation and thermal stability using ion beam techniques in the group of Dr. Smith.
Initially, the emphasis was on designing a multilayer structure for the coatings, e.g. CrN/AlN nanolayers, that would reduce oxidation rates while maintaining good electron conduction and mechanical adhesion. Reduction of oxidation rates by more than an order of magnitude was achieved. Subsequently, the focus shifted to coatings consisting of CrAlON (oxynitrides). More recently, the group began fabricating and studying functional coatings consisting of a bond coat for adhesion, and a top coat for corrosion resistance and thermal stability. As issues of Cr volatility and degradation of stack performance received more attention, the group developed procedures for quantitative measurements of Cr volatility from steel surfaces using ion beam analysis. The group also uses nuclear reaction analysis (NRA) with isotopes of oxygen (18O) to measure oxygen transport during oxide scale growth and surface exchange rates for oxygen adsorption, e.g. at YSZ electrolyte surfaces.
Anticipating a need for thinner electrolytes in SOFCs operating at lower temperatures, the group initiated experiments to grow dense YSZ on porous YSZ anode material using magnetron sputtering and LAFAD processes. The facilities used by Dr. Smith’s group for this project include the ion beam laboratory at MSU, the ICAL facility at MSU, the Montana Microfabrication Facility at MSU, and the ion beam analysis laboratory at EMSL in Richland, Wash., as well as the growth facilities at ASE.
Web link: http://www.physics.montana.edu/ionbeams/smith.htm
Refereed publications related to HiTEC research (2005-2006)
- “Misfit dislocations at the single-crystal Fe2O3/Al2O3 interface”, S. Maheswaran, S. Thevuthasan, F. Gao, V. Shutthanandan, C.M. Wang, and R.J. Smith, Phys. Rev. B 72, 075403 (2005).
- “Oxidation studies of CrAlON Nanolayered Coatings on Steel Plates”, A. Kayani, R. J. Smith, S. Teintze, M. Kopczyk, P. E. Gannon, M. C. Deibert, V. I. Gorokhovsky, V. Shutthanandan, accepted in Surface and Coatings Technology, 2006.
- “Oxidation resistance at 800 oC for magnetron-sputtered CrAlN coatings on 430 steel”, A. Kayani, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, C. Collins, J. Lucas, K. Lund, R. Hutchison, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert and R.J. Smith, accepted in Surface and Coatings Technology, 2006.
- “Chromium Volatility of Coated and Uncoated Steel Interconnects for SOFCs”, C. Collins, J. Lucas, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, A. Kayani, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, R. J. Smith, D.-S. Choi, V.I. Gorokhovsky, accepted in Surface and Coatings Technology, 2006.
- “Tribological performance of hybrid filtered arc-magnetron coatings. Part I: Coating deposition process and basic coating properties characterization”, V. Gorokhovsky, C. Bowman, P. Gannon, D. VanVorous, A. Voevodin, A. Rutkowski, C.Muratore, R.J. Smith, A. Kayani, D. Gelles, V. Shutthanandan, B.G.Trusov, accepted in Surface and Coatings Technology, 2006.
- "Deposition and Evaluation of Protective PVD Coatings on Ferritic Stainless-Steel SOFC Interconnects", V.I. Gorokhovsky, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, R.J. Smith, A. Kayani, M. Kopczyk, D. VanVorous, Zhenguo Yang, J.W. Stevenson, S. Visco, C. Jacobson, H. Kurokawa, S.W. Sofie, accepted in Journal of Electrochemical Society, 2006.
- “Enabling inexpensive alloys as SOFC interconnects: an investigation into hybrid coating technologies to deposit nanocomposite functional coatings on ferritic stainless steels”, P.E. Gannon1, V.I. Gorokhovsky, M.C. Deibert, R.J. Smith, A. Kayani, P.T. White, Z. Gary Yang, D. McCready, S. Visco, C. Jacobson, H. Kurokawa, accepted in International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 2006.
- “Simulated Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Interconnect Performance of Crofer 22 APU with and without Filtered Arc Cr-Al-O-N Coatings”, P.E. Gannon, A. Kayani, C.V.Ramana, M.Deibert, R.J.Smith, V.I.Gorokhovsky, Surface and Coatings Technology, submitted.
Contributed/Invited Talks and Posters presented at meetings during the past year
(Name underlined actually gave the presentation)
- “Applications of Ion Beam Analysis to Materials Characterization for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells”, R.J. Smith, R. Hutchison, A. Kayani, M. Kopczyk, M Finsterbusch, A. Comouth, J. Lucas, C. Collins, K. Lund, Ian Vrable, T. Buchanan, W. Priyantha, H. Chen, V. Gorokhovsky, P.Gannon, M.C. Deibert, 19th International Conference on the Applications of Accelerators in Research and Industry, Ft. Worth, TX August 20-26, 2006.
- “Chromium Volatility of Coated and Uncoated Steel Interconnects for SOFCs”, C. Collins, J. Lucas, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, A. Kayani, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, D.S. Choi, V.I. Gorokhovsky, and R. J. Smith, ICMCTF, San Diego, CA May 2006.
- “Oxidation resistance of magnetron-sputtered CrAlN coatings on 430 steel at 800° C”, A. Kayani, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, C. Collins, J. Lucas, K. Lund, R. Hutchison, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, D.S. Choi, V.I. Gorokhovsky, and R.J. Smith, ICMCTF, San diego, CA May 2006.
- “Investigating hybrid filtered arc plasma source ion deposition technologies to deposit nanostructured functional coatings on ferrritic stainless steels. Part 1. Deposition process parameters and basic coating characteristics”, V.I. Gorokhovsky, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, R.J. Smith, A. Kayani, S. Sofie, Z. Gary Yang, J.W. Stevenson, ICMCTF 2006 San Diego, CA
- “Investigating hybrid filtered arc plasma source ion deposition technologies to deposit nanostructured functional coatings on ferrritic stainless steels. Part 2. Simulated solid oxide fuel cell interconnect performance”, P.E. Gannon, V.I. Gorokhovsky, M.C. Deibert, R.J. Smith, A. Kayani, S. Sofie, Z. Gary Yang, J.W. Stevenson, S. Visco, C. Jacobson, H. Kurokawa, ICMCTF 2006 San Diego, CA
- “Rapid, quantitative characterization of chromium vaporization from steel surfaces with and without protective coatings by means of ion beam analysis”, C.Collins, J. Lucas, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, R. Hutchison, A. Kayani, R.J. Smith, D.S. Choi, V.I. Gorokhovsky, P.E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, MST ’06, Cincinnati, OH October, 2006.
- “Oxidation resistance at 800oC for CrAlN Coatings of various nanoarchitectures on steel SOFC interconnects”, A. Kayani, T.L. Buchanan, M. Kopczyk, J. Lucas, C. Collins, R. Hutchison, R.J. Smith, V.I. Gorokhovsky, P. E. Gannon, M.C. Deibert, MST ’06, Cincinnati, OH October, 2006.
Students/visitors working in the group: Fall 2005 – Fall 2006
Postdoctoral Research Scientists, Sabbatical Visitors, and Other:
- Dr. Asghar Kayani - Research Scientist – lab manager; SOFC HiTEC project; hired 11/2003, left for another position 7/2006.
- Prof. Dae-Sun Choi - sabbatical visitor, Kangwon National University, Seoul, Korea; worked on NSF interlayer project and HiTEC projects; 2/15/05 to 1/31/06
- Dr. Weerasinghe Priyantha – Postdoctoral Research Scientist; NSF/HiTEC project – hired 4/15/2006
- Dr. Chen Hui - Postdoctoral Research Scientist; HiTEC project – hired 6/15/2006
- Mike Kopczyk – Ph.D student; currently in 4th year; partial support from HiTEC
- River Hutchison – Ph.D student; currently in 3rd year; RA from HiTEC
- Jake Lucas (Phys. Sr.) – SOFC project; chromium volatility of steel surfaces with coatings; RBS analysis
- Cami Collins (Phys. Jr.) - SOFC project; chromium volatility of steel surfaces with coatings; RBS analysis
- Kasey Lund (Phys. Jr.) – SOFC project; sputter deposition of YSZ films; RBS analysis
- Ian Vrable (Phys. Fr.) – SOFC project; group meetings; YSZ growth; x-ray diffraction
- Orion Bellorado (Phys. Fr.) – SOFC project; YSZ growth; impedance spectroscopy
- T. Buchanan (summer RET from Belgrade Middle School) – sputter deposition of CrN/AlN multilayer coatings; oxidation studies; RBS analysis
- Seth Chart (Phys. So.) – SOFC project; start Fall 2006
- Aaron Kreitinger ( Phys So.) – SOFC project; start Fall 2006
- Marc Binney (summer NSF/REU from Winona State College, Winona, MN) – oxidation studies of coated SOFC interconnect materials
- Andrew Dugdale (Math/Phys Sr.) – Summer research project - effects of Pt electrodes on oxidation rates of steel SOFC interconnect materials
- Martin Finsterbusch (German student, TU Ilmenau, 6 mo.) – ion beam analysis for oxidation resistance of CoMnO coatings for SOFC steel interconnects