People

 Academic Staff

Michael Moody

Prof Michael Moody

Head of Atom Probe Research Group

Professor of Materials Science

Phone: +44 1865 273693

michael.moody@materials.ox.ac.uk

Michael is the Head of the Atom Probe Research Group in the Department of Materials at the University of Oxford. The group currently leads and supports research into a wide range of materials topics including: superalloys for aerospace applications, structural materials for fusion and fission power, Si and GaN semiconductors and catalysis. To this end, we collaborate with scientists and engineers from around the world on a wide range projects. A key focus of my own recent research has been the design of new analytical techniques to improve the accuracy of the reconstruction of atom probe data and to increase the information obtainable from subsequent analysis of the results. However, the group has active interests in all aspects of atom probe research and places a significant emphasis on developing advanced techniques and applications.

Please contact Michael if you are interested in collaborating with us and/or would like to know more about our atom probe facilities.

Dr Michael Moody - Materials Oxford Homepage (with summary of research interests and full list of publications)

 

Back to top

 

Paul Bagot

 

Dr Paul Bagot

Atom Probe Scientist

St. Catherine's College Lecturer

Phone: +44 1865 273711

paul.bagot@materials.ox.ac.uk

Paul oversees the operational running of the Atom Probe Research Group, responsible for the group's 3 instruments as well as developing and managing collaborations with academic and industrial partners. This work aims to expand the use of APT into new fields/industries, along with integrating APT data alongside a number of complementary experimental/modelling tools. In particular, he leads interactions with Rolls-Royce plc on advanced alloys for aerospace applications. He also has significant research interests in heterogeneous catalysis, along with being involved in work to develop novel in-situ reaction-cells with a range of partners onto atom probe systems worldwide.

Dr Paul Bagot - Materials Oxford Homepage (with summary of research interests and full list of publications)

 

 Back to top

 

Prof. George Smith FRS

 

Professor George Smith FRS

Emeritus Professor in Materials

george.smith@materials.ox.ac.uk




George was leader of the atom probe group for over 40 years, where his work included the development of the first three-dimensional atom probe instrument in the world, designed at Oxford in the late 1980s. George is the recipient of many awards for his scientific contributions, including the 2005 Acta Gold Medal, 2006 Institute of Materials Platinum Medal and more recently the 2016 TMS Hume-Rothery award. George retired in 2011 but as Emeritus Professor he still plays an active role in the group working on interests such as atom probe analysis of phase transformations, studies of the role of alloy elements and trace additions on the microstructure, heat treatment and properties of steels and non-ferrous alloys. Atomic scale studies of heterogeneous catalysts.

Professor George Smith - Materials Oxford Homepage (with summary of research interests and full list of publications)

Back to top



Research Fellows

 



Dr Maria Auger

Dr Maria A Auger

Postdoctoral Research Assistant

Microstructural characterisation of nuclear materials
and radiation induced effects

Phone: +44 (0) 1865 273694

maria.auger@materials.ox.ac.uk

Maria has a wide experience in manufacturing ODS Fe-Cr alloys by powder metallurgy routes and thermomechanical processing. A detailed characterisation of these materials at different stages in the manufacturing process is essential to understand their behaviour after irradiation experiments or, more importantly, their behaviour under real reactor conditions. Combining different techniques like SEM, TEM, XRD and nanoindentation/tensile testing/Charpy impact testing with Atom Probe tomography provides a unique set of data that can fully describe any microstructural changes in the material and those can be correlated with the mechanical response. Some materials submitted to this type of study include ODS Fe-Cr model alloys, HT-9 steel or RPV steels (with more to come!).

Collaborating with: Materials for Fusion and Fission, Oxford EMI Training and STEM Ambassadors

Back to top

Dr Daniel Haley

Dr Daniel Haley

Postdoctoral Research Assistant

The Development of an in-situ Deuterium Charging Cell for
Atom Probe Analysis of Hydrogen embrittlement in Metals

daniel.haley@materials.ox.ac.uk

Daniel is a post-doctoral researcher currently investigating hydrogen imaging via Atom probe, as part of the Hydrogen Embrittlement in Metals (HEMs) project. Daniel initially conducted APT-based hydrogen studies at the Max-Planck Institut für Eisenforschung in Düsseldorf, Germany.

The atom probe component of the HEMs project aims to develop hydrogen imaging in APT to a straightforward method for imaging hydrogen in steels (and other materials), to better understand the ubiquitous role of hydrogen in toughness reduction.

Daniel also works in the area of atom probe data analysis, with his previous time in Oxford working on new atom probe reconstruction methods, based upon physical models of evaporation coupled to experimental data.

 Back to top

 

James Douglas

James Douglas

Post Doctoral Research Assistant

Atom Probe Tomography analysis of neutron irradiated steels 

Phone: +44 (0) 1865 736944

james.douglas@materials.ox.ac.uk

James' research is a collaborative project, with partners at Imperial College and the University of Manchester, to characterise neutron irradiation-induced solute clustering in reactor pressure vessel steels. The project is funded in the UK by the EPSRC, and will be undertaken in close collaboration with collaborators at the CCFE, ANSTO (Australia) and industrial partners at Rolls Royce and the National Nuclear Laboratory. His work at Oxford is to carry out atom probe tomography (APT) characterisation to directly analyse nanoscale solute clusters in terms of composition, size and number density as a function of irradiation conditions and material composition and microstructure. Samples for APT analysis are prepared via focussed ion beam (FIB) techniques (informed by EDX and EBSD) and APT analysis will be in parallel with complementary high-resolution microscopy, mechanical testing and modelling studies of radiation damage by collaborating partners.

Back to top

 

 

 
   

Visiting Academics

 

 

Andrew London

Dr Andrew London

Post Doctoral Research Assistant

Spatial Distribution and Irradiation Response 
of Oxide-Dispersed Steels

andrew.london@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

Low activation steels are promising candidates for future fission and fusion reactors but lack the high temperature stability required for long-term use. One way of reinforcing these materials is to introduce nano-scale oxide inclusions which block dislocation glide. Andrew is investigating the chemical influence of alloy composition on the irradiation stability of model alloys produced in collaboration with the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research in India. Andrew is using atom probe tomography to study the spatial distribution, character and irradiation response of the yttrium-titanium rich oxides in these steels to further the fundamental understanding of these types of alloys.

 

Back to top

 


Baptiste Gault

Dr Baptiste Gault

Visiting Academic, Max Planck Institute fur Eisenforschung

baptiste.gault@materials.ox.ac.uk

After a PhD mixing physics and materials science in France (University of Rouen, 2006) focused on the development of the pulsed-laser atom probe microscope, I have successively been a research scientist at The Australian Centre for Microscopy & Microanalysis at The University of Sydney, a Marie Curie postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Materials of the University of Oxford, a research scientist at The University of Sydney (again) on a joint position with the Australian Nuclear Science & Technology Organisation, and finally an assistant professor at McMaster University in Canada. I started at Elsevier Ltd. in a role of Publisher in Dec. 2012, where I manage a portfolio of journals in Materials Science. Although currently a full-time group leader at MPIE, I gladly accepted the honorary title of Visiting Academic of the Department of Materials, so I can keep collaborating and provide help and support to the group.

Dr Jonathan Hyde

Visiting Academic, National Nuclear Laboratory

jonathan.hyde@materials.ox.ac.uk

Extensive research on ferritic steels used to manufacture reactor pressure vessels (RPVs) has demonstrated that irradiation-induced damage can be classified as a combination of matrix damage resulting from radiation produced point defect clusters and their radiation enhanced formation of 1–2 nm diameter clusters containing solutes such as Cu, Mn, Ni and Si. Despite the size of these features, they can have a dramatic and deleterious effect on materials properties. The irradiation-induced features act as barriers to dislocation movement resulting in an increase in hardness which results in embrittlement. Microstructural characterisation, using atom probe tomography, is imperative because it underpins the mechanistic understanding of the damage processes which is essential for predicting materials properties at higher doses or in materials of different composition. The main focus of Dr Hyde's current research is the characterisation of the very early stages of solute clustering. This is an area of increasing interest on two counts, as the mechanisms of cluster formation are poorly understood, while secondly there is new evidence for late blooming phases (LBPs), which is an increasing concern as plant operators are looking to extend plant life beyond the original design life of the RPV. There is a need to ensure methodologies are in place to detect the early stages of LBPs.

In addition, Dr. Hyde is interested in developing improved algorithms for characterising small solute clusters and precipitates.

Dr Tomas Martin

Dr Tomas Martin

Visiting Academic, University of Bristol

tomas.martin@materials.ox.ac.uk

Stella Pedrazzini

Dr Stella Pedrazzini

Visiting Academic, University of Cambridge

stella.pedrazzini@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

Back to top

 

Research Students

 


Michal Dagan

Megan Carter

DPhil student

Atom probe analysis of neutron irradiated steels

megan.carter@materials.ox.ac.uk

Megan’s DPhil research is part of an EPSRC-funded project linking microstructure to neutron irradiation defects in advanced manufacture of steels. The project involves high levels of collaboration in the UK and abroad including Imperial College and the University of Manchester (providing atomic-scale modelling and high-resolution microscopy respectively),the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy (CCFE), the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), Rolls-Royce and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO).

Her role within the project is to utilise APT to investigate nanoscale solute clustering behaviour in SA508 steels following neutron irradiation. Forged steels with a variety of processing conditions and microstructures have been supplied by Rolls Royce, including those produced through Hot Isostatic Pressing, in order to explore the differences in irradiation response as a function of materials processing and microstructure. Atom probe specimen preparation will be conducted using Focused Ion Beam at both the Oxford University Department of Materials and CCFE (for radioactive samples).

 Back to top

   

Anne Callow

Anne Callow

DPhil student

Hydrogen Pickup and Oxidation in
Zirconium Alloys for Nuclear Fuel Cladding

anne.callow@materials.ox.ac.uk


 

Anne is carrying out a DPhil project as part of the Mechanistic Understanding of Zirconium Corrosion MUZIC-3 programme. The MUZIC-3 programme is an international consortium between numerous industry stakeholders and academic institutions. This is the third of its kind and previous work has focused on understanding the oxide layer formation and hydrogen pick up mechanisms in zirconium alloys used in nuclear applications. The project will use Atom Probe Tomography to form a systematic analysis of the bulk chemistry for a set of ex-reactor samples. This project aims to understand the chemistry ahead of the oxide front and investigate whether this may be related to the oxide formation in reactor conditions. Samples to be analysed are ex-reactor neutron irradiated zirconium alloys containing Nb, which are provided by Westinghouse. 

Back to top

   

Qifeng Yang

 

Qifeng Yang

DPhil student

Atom Probe Analysis of Nanoparticle Catalysts

qifeng.yang@materials.ox.ac.uk

Catalytic alloys are of paramount importance in chemicals production, pollution control and generation of clean energy using fuel cells. The structure and chemical information of such catalytic alloys are a long lasting research area in terms of improving understanding of the link between structure and performance, with the overall aim of producing more efficient catalysts using less expensive rare metals. Novel techniques are increasingly involved in this work.  Atom probe tomography (APT), which has high spatial resolution and mass resolution, has been proved as an important technique to evaluate catalytic alloys.

In my research, APT will be utilized to study model bimetallic alloys and a range of core-shell type catalytic particles. The surface segregation of metals in a catalyst is an important aspect of this research. Metallic behaviours of catalytic alloys under different temperatures and atmospheres will be investigated via APT to further understand issues such as performance loss/catalyst poisoning.

Back to top

Yeli Guma

Guma Yeli

DPhil student

The Effects of Thermal Ageing on Fission Reactor Component Steels

guma.yeli@materials.ox.ac.uk

Iron-based alloys are core class of structural materials for nuclear reactors because of their good combination of high strength, corrosion resistance and a degree of ductility and toughness. Unfortunately, carefully these carefully selected properties can change during long term service.  This study is focused on the thermal aging effects of iron-based alloys utilizing atom-probe tomography. Micro structural changes including clustering and phase-separation will be analysed using this method, while complementary hardness tests will be made to link atomic-scale changes with mechanical properties. A model will also be developed to predict the mechanical properties.

Back to top

David Tweddle

DPhil student

Atom Probe Characterisation of Individual Dislocations in Multi-Crystalline Silicon

david.tweddle@materials.ox.ac.uk

 Multicrystalline silicon is the dominant industrial technology for photovoltaic solar cells. The efficiency of these solar cells is strongly limited by the presence of recombination active, decorated crystallographic defects, primarily dislocations. My project intends to examine both the electrical activity and local composition of dislocations. A multi-technique approach of electron beam induced current, transmission electron microscopy and atom probe tomography will enable an atom-by-atom characterisation of such defects.

Back to top

Tom Lapington

Tom (Mark) Lapington

DPhil student

High resolution characterization of oxidation
mechanisms in nickel-based superalloys

mark.lapington@materials.ox.ac.uk

Tom joined the group in October 2014 following completion of a degree in engineering at the University of Swansea. His DPhil research will be carried out on the oxidation behaviour of new prototype polycrystalline nickel-based superalloys, for use in high-temperature turbine disc applications. The emphasis will be on establishing compositional effects related to small additions of elements such as Al, Cr, Co, Nb and Ti on Oxidation behaviour. Both bulk oxidation and oxidation at crack tips – for example during dwell fatigue – will be considered. Atom-probe Tomography will be used to study the compositional variations on the atomic scale, whilst Thermal Gravimetric Analysis (TGA), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) and electron microscopy will be utilized for larger scale bulk characterization purposes.

Back to top

Yi-Sheng Chen

Yi-Sheng (Eason) Chen

DPhil student

Hydrogen embrittlement in steels and
deuterium charging of metals for APT analysis

yi-sheng.chen@materials.ox.ac.uk

Yi-Sheng Chen completed his BS and MS at National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan and then joined the group for the project of investigating hydrogen imaging via Atom Probe, as part of HEmS (Hydrogen in metals - from fundamentals to the design of new steels). It has been known for over a hundred years that hydrogen causes catastrophic failure in high strength steels. The overall aim of HEmS is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the process of hydrogen embrittlement in steels, through an integration of advanced characterisation, testing and modelling techniques. This new understanding will be used to develop new ultra-high strength steels that are resistant to embrittlement in the presence of hydrogen. Our sub-work package will implement Atom Probe Microscope to provide atomic scale physical and chemical analysis, including local bonding information, by using deuterium charged samples. This method of characterising hydrogen/deuterium in steels will improve our understanding of the origin of hydrogen embrittlement and elucidate the mechanisms of hydrogen trapping.

Back to top

Benjamin Jenkins

Benjamin Jenkins

DPhil student

Clustering in RPV steels: an Atom Probe study

benjamin.jenkins@materials.ox.ac.uk

The reactor pressure vessel (RPV) is often considered the limiting factor in achieving long-term operation for commercial light water reactor nuclear power plants.Solute clustering is known to play a significant role in the embrittlement of RPV steels. Primarily, research has focused on the deleterious effects of copper. Recent research has also focused on the effects of nickel and manganese.

My project is a continuation of work conducted by Jenni Zelenty, and focuses on the effects of long-term thermal ageing on the microstructure and mechanical properties of RPV steels. Atom probe tomography (APT) is utilised to characterise the early stage clustering of nickel, and manganese within low copper RPV steels. To date the steels have been thermally aged for 10,000 hours at various temperatures (330°C, 365°C, and 405°C). As the steels age, hardness tests will be conducted and samples will be analysed using APT in order to investigate the solute clustering mechanisms induced by the ageing process.

Back to top



Hazel Gardner

DPhil student

Atom probe analysis of Ti-based alloys

hazel.gardner@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

The concentration of interstitial elements in titanium alloy aerospace components can have a significant detrimental effect on mechanical properties. For example, oxygen encourages the formation of the embrittling α2 phase and can also lead to formation of a hard and brittle α case layer in service. My project will use atom probe tomography to explore where oxygen and nitrogen reside within the microstructure of Ti-7Al and Ti-64 respectively, in order to better understand the mechanisms of oxygen embrittlement. The structure of the oxygen-rich α case layer that forms at the surface of commercial alloy IMI 834 will also be studied.

Back to top


Thomas Davis

DPhil student

thomas.davis@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

Thomas P. Davis is a Fusion CDT PhD student under the supervision of Dr D.E.J. Armstrong, Prof. M.P. Moody and Dr M.A Auger. For future fission and fusion power plant designs there is a critical need for understanding the effect of neutron damage on structural materials in terms of changes in their mechanical properties and microstructural evolution. His project will be utilising atom probe tomography, transmission electron microscopy and micromechanics to investigate the effect of neutron and ion irradiation on oxide dispersion strengthened steels.

Back to top

Matthew J. Lloyd

DPhil Student

Radiation Damage and Transmutation of Tungsten Alloys for Nuclear Fusion

matthew.lloyd@materials.ox.ac.uk

Matthew J. Lloyd is a PhD student on the Fusion CDT, supervised by Dr David Armstrong, Professor Michael Moody and Dr Paul Bagot, from the University of Oxford and Dr Duc Nguyen-Manh of the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy. The realisation of Fusion Energy is dependent on the development of materials that can survive the extreme conditions present at the first wall of the reactor. This project aims to investigate how the properties and microstrcture of Tungsten first wall components will change under neutron irradiation. Atom Probe Tomography will be used to observe nano-scale precipitation in high temperature ion irradiated W-Re-Os-Ta alloys, designed to represent the predicted change in composition of the first wall components over time. 

 

James Famelton

DPhil Student

james.famelton@materials.ox.ac.uk

Reducing the weight of automotive vehicles is a critical consideration in improving their fuel efficiency and hence reducing the environmental impact. My research focuses on new high strength 6XXX series alloys developed for crush strength to be used in car safety systems.

There is a lack of understanding about how the desired microstructure develops, particularly the initial cluster formation. Atom probe tomography allows visualisation and quantification of these initial stages of microstructure formation. In particular the aim is to identify the effect of trace alloy additions on the cluster formation for a range of alloys and heat treatments. This should hopefully inform the design of future high strength 6XXX series alloys.

 

Megan Jones

Masters Student

Enabling the 3D Imaging of Hydrogen in Zirconium Alloys via Advanced Atom Probe

megan.jones@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

Samantha Southern

Masters student

The effect of thermal ageing on the atomic-scale microstructure and properties of 17-4PH steel.

samantha.southern@materials.ox.ac.uk

 

 


 Previous Members