Speaker Bio and Abstract


Michael Falk
Professor Departments of Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Physics and Astronomy
Johns Hopkins University
3400 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21218
phone: 410-929-4242
email: mfalk@jhu.edu

Seminar Title

“Bridging from Atoms to Continua in the Mechanics of Amorphous Solids"


Amorphous solids, which lack crystal structure, find wide application from consumer goods to photovoltaics and are ubiquitous in the natural world as glasses, but issues quantifying disorder have stymied reliable mechanical constitutive laws for these materials. Quantitatively predicting strain localization, a limiting failure process in high-strength metallic glasses and other amorphous materials, requires adequately capturing fluctuations in material structure and their role in the material’s mechanical response. We focus on using atomic-scale models to quantify fluctuations in the glass structure correlated with deformation in shear. We then directly crosscompare molecular dynamics simulations and continuum representations of these same materials in order to test and validate constitutive theories relating disorder and plasticity.

Speaker Bio

Michael Falk is a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering with joint appointments in Physics and Astronomy and Mechanical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University (JHU). He received his B.A. in physics (1990) and M.S.E. in computer science (1991) from JHU and his Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Santa Barbara (1998). He was awarded the American Physical Society (APS) Nicholas Metropolis Award for outstanding doctoral thesis in computational physics in 2000. His research interests have included topics in non-equilibrium processes in materials including fracture and deformation in amorphous solids, nanoscale friction and wear, transport processes in energy storage materials and atomistic simulation on extended time scales. He also pursues education research related to integration of computation into undergraduate engineering curriculum. In addition to his scientific and education research he serves as P.I. on a NSF funded outreach effort, STEM Achievement in Baltimore Elementary Schools, that fields more than 200 volunteers and reaches over 1000 students. He also served as chair of the APS Committee on LGBT Issues and is a proponent for a supportive professional climate for LGBT scientists and engineers.

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