May 5: Northwestern University's Leon Keer to deliver Kerr lecture
Leon M. Keer

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1:26 p.m., March 29, 2011----Northwestern University's Leon M. Keer will present a micromechanics-based theory for predicting surface damage in advanced materials at the sixth annual Arnold D. Kerr Lecture on Thursday, May 5, at 4 p.m. at John M. Clayton Hall on the University of Delaware's Laird Campus in Newark.

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Real surfaces in contact are subject to damage such as wear and plastic deformation, which deteriorates surface performance and leads to material failure.

Keer's lecture, entitled “A Unified Theory for Modeling Damage to Real Surfaces in Contact,” addresses the effects of imperfections caused by chipping wear and gradual wear. It also offers modeling techniques to forecast potential surface damage, an issue critical to aerospace, biomedical and energy applications.

A reception in 120 Clayton Hall precedes the lecture at 3:30 p.m.

Keer is the Walter P. Murphy Professor of Mechanical Engineering and professor of civil and environmental engineering at Northwestern. His research focuses on contact mechanics, tribology and electrical interconnects.

He is a fellow of the American Academy of Mechanics, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the Acoustical Society of America and the National Academy of Engineering. He received the Daniel C. Drucker Medal from ASME and the Mayo D. Hersey Award from the ASME Tribology Division.

About the Kerr lecture series

The Kerr lecture is sponsored by UD's Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. In its sixth year, the engineering mechanics lecture series honors Arnold Kerr, Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering, who retired in 2004. Kerr is an internationally recognized expert in engineering mechanics, with a particular focus on railway engineering.

Past lecturers in the Kerr series have included John Kulicki, chairman and CEO of Modjeski and Masters; Henry Petroski, author of more than a dozen popular books on engineering-related topics; David Billington, professor at Princeton University; and Charles Thornton, a world-renowned structural engineer who has made significant contributions to the investigation of major failures, including the collapse of the World Trade Center twin towers.

Article by Katie Galgano

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