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Materials Engineering

Materials Engineering

Materials Staff - Jan Kowal


Mr. Jan Kowal

OU Location:
Venables Building, Room S2027

UK Telephone No:
+44 (0) 1908 - 653024

E-Mail address:

Jan Kowal
Jan Kowal

Academic interests

I am currently chairing T356 Small Worlds: Micro and Nanotechnologies, which was first presented in 2006. I am also involved in the two residential school modules:

TXR120 Engineering: an Active Introduction

TXR220 Engineering in Action,

as well as:

T207 Engineering, Mechanics, Materials

ST174 Nuclear Power

I am currently working towards re-introducing electronics into the undergraduate engineering programme.

Research Interests

My background is entirely industrial. Most recently as an engineer in the field of micro-electromechanical systems. This is a manufacturing technology that uses wafer-scale processing techniques to shape materials such as silicon and glass into miniature physically or chemically active components. This has largely involved designing sensors of various kinds (accelerometers, pressure sensors, CO2 sensors), as well as structures such as microfluidic devices and integrated optical chips. An important process within this technology is that of semiconductor wafer to wafer bonding, and since joining the OU I have been trying to understand the mechanisms by which exposing wafers to gas discharges enhances the strength of the bond made subsequently.

More recently, I have been working in a different field: that of the measurement of residual stress. Here, we have been working to improve a relatively new method of mapping residual stresses, known as the contour method, in which the sample to be measured is first carefully cut in two using a wire electrodischarge machine. The deviations from flatness of the cut surfaces are then measured and these data are then used in a finite element model to calculate the residual stresses that must have been present before the cut was made.

Recent Publications

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