The Department of Materials Science and Engineering at North Carolina State University welcomes Professor Elizabeth Dickey as she joins the faculty at NC State after spending almost ten years at Pennsylvania State University, where she was a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Associate Director of the Materials Research Institute. She received her B.S. in Materials Engineering in 1992 from the University of Kentucky and later received a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering at Northwestern University under an NSF graduate research fellowship.
Her academic and research interests include functional oxide ceramics, interface materials science, high-temperature ceramic composites and nanomaterials. Common to these research programs is quantitative structural and chemical analysis from the micrometer to atomic length scale. In the area of functional oxide materials, her group combines experimental and theoretical investigations of charged lattice defects, e.g. oxygen vacancies, with the objective of developing accurate predictive models of their concentrations and equilibration with grain boundaries and interfaces and understanding the implications for electrical transport. She is also pursuing research to understand the dynamics of point defect migration under applied electrical bias, and the effects of interactions with higher dimensional defects such as dislocations, grain boundaries and electrode interfaces.
Another major research area is in ceramic eutectic composites for high-temperature and high-hardness applications. Currently her group is studying the B4C-TiB2 eutectic to understand microstructural scaling laws for the material hardness. Her group is also exploring the utility of ceramic eutectics for surface modification of cutting tools.
Professor Dickey has over peer-reviewed 100 publications. She was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for her work on metal-ceramic interfaces in 1999 and became a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society in 2010. She has held several leadership positions within the American Ceramic Society, including the Chair of the Basic Sciences Division. She served as an editor for Microscopy and Microanalysis and is currently an Associate Editor for the Journal of the American Ceramic Society.