Student Materials Research Activities

Students have the opportunity to perform materials research on the microstructure and mechanical properties of materials, especially metals/alloys of industrial interest and structural wrought iron of historical significance. Modern metallographic sample preparation and characterization (optical macroscopy/microscopy) and micro- and macro-indentation hardness equipment are accessible for student use. This can occur either during the school year (including course credit) or during the summer as the recipient of a Hauber Research Fellowship. At times, students have made sufficient progress to warrant presentation at a national meeting or publication in a journal or on the internet as listed below.

Indentation Hardness Testing of Industrial Materials:

  1. “Rockwell Hardness Testing of Steel Reinforcing Bar to Obtain Estimates of Tensile Strength,” T.M. Robinson, M.T. Kalensky, A.M. Stanzel, N.J. Gordon, and W.L. Elban, appears as a materials education module (2016) at (
  2. "Vickers Microindentation Hardness Testing of Brazed Joints in Aluminum," P.B. Roy, F.M. O'Connell, T.H. Callahan, E.J. Armellino, and W.L. Elban, presented at the 2012 National Educators' Workshop, appears as a materials education module (2013) at (
  3. “Metallurgical Characterization of Refrigeration Tubing Formed from Plain Carbon Steel Strip Stock,” W.L. Elban and K.F. Rowe, Journal of Manufacturing Processes, Vol. 10 (2008), pp. 89-95

Historical Ferrous Metallurgy:

  1. “Metallurgical Assessment of Historic Wrought Iron: U.S. Custom House, Wheeling, West Virginia,” W.L. Elban, M.A. Borst, N.M. Roubachewsky, E.L. Kemp, and P.C. Tice, APT Bulletin: The Journal of Preservation Technology, Vol. XXIX (1998), pp. 27-34.
  2. “Metallographic Examination and Vickers Microindentation Hardness Testing of Historic Wrought Iron from the Wheeling Custom House,” W.L. Elban, M.A. Borst, N.M. Roubachewsky, E.L. Kemp, and P.C. Tice, in Microstructural Science, Volume 24: Understanding Microstructure: Key to Advances in Materials (Proceedings of the 29th Annual Technical Meeting of the International Metallographic Society), June 1997, pp. 177-183.