In recent years, the Materials Science & Technology conference has become the broadest materials-oriented meeting in the United States. The 2009 MS&T conference – to be held Oct. 25-29 in Pittsburgh – will feature a novel symposium organized by Rishi Raj, with assistance from Rustum Roy and Dinesh Agrawal. Guest blogger Raj provides the following information about the symposium and encourages potential presenters to submit abstracts as part of MS&T’s call for papers.

“New Roles for Electric and Magnetic Fields in Processing, Microstructure Evolution, and Performance of Material”
Microwave sintering, spark–plasma–sintering, creep, superplasticity, grain growth and  phase–transformation are examples of  the strong influence of electrical and magnetic fields on processing, microstructure evolution and properties of materials. This symposium will provide an impetus to a new era of materials science where mechanical, chemical and electrical driving forces are coupled into a unified framework to explain dramatic new phenomena in the MS&T-world’s most significant materials.

The symposium addresses experimental findings, engineering implications, and fundamental mechanisms of these new transformative discoveries. It includes all materials from polymers, to ceramics, metals,  and semiconductors. The symposium is particularly interested in interfacial reactions in materials systems such as those used in batteries, fuel cells, and hydrogen production from water.   – Rishi Raj