A Colorado School of Mines associate professor of metallurgical and materials engineering has coauthored a textbook on the mechanical properties of steel, emphasizing approaches that can be applied to engineering practice.
Kip Findley, who is also a member of the Advanced Steel Processing and Products Research Center at Mines, coauthored Introduction to the Mechanical Behavior of Steel with Bruno De Cooman, a professor in the Graduate Institute of Ferrous Technology at Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea. The book was published by the Association for Iron & Steel Technology.
“The book fills a niche as a one-stop source for mechanical behavior of steel,” Findley said. Both authors are part of institutions that have a unique focus on metallurgy that supports the development of these types of products. “Steel is one of the most used materials in the world, and steel companies have very large research groups working on new alloy development.”
It’s also a complex topic. “Steel is a pretty complicated alloy with a huge range of compositions and microstructures, which provides an enormous range of possible mechanical properties,” Findley said.
While the book goes fairly deep into theory, it relates theory to practical applications. For example, the chapter on fatigue, which Findley worked the most on, has content about axles and gears.
In addition to serving as a resource for practicing engineers, Findley sees the textbook being used by undergraduate seniors and graduate students. “It requires some background in materials engineering,” he said. The book also includes practice problems with solutions to help guide engineers and researchers putting the content into practice.
The textbook is a first for Findley, and it proved much different from the academic papers he usually writes. Instead of developing new knowledge, “it’s taking knowledge that’s established and trying to write in a way that’s educational for a certain audience,” he said.
The process took several years, on and off. “It does take some patience, but it was fun to dig in and it’s a unique opportunity to pull literature together from different sources and reeducate yourself about what’s out there,” Findley said.
Findley earned a bachelor’s degree in metallurgical and materials engineering from Mines and a PhD in materials science and engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He joined the Mines faculty in 2008.