Enabling material analysis with neutron beams at manufacturing sites
—A new route toward development of advanced lightweight steel materials—
To reduce the body weight of transportation equipment such as automobiles, it is vital to develop advanced steel materials with both higher strength and higher ductility than ever. However, in order to achieve that, it is crucial to gain a quantitative understanding of the crystallographic texture which affects the mechanical properties of steel materials.
Neutron diffraction is an effective technique for measuring this crystallographic texture, but the technology for achieving this does not exist at manufacturing sites. Thus, there are high expectations for development of crystallographic texture measurement technology employing compact neutron sources that are readily usable on site.
Recently, a crystallographic texture measurement technology using neutron diffraction, and capable of realization at manufacturing sites, was successfully developed for the first time in the world. This was achieved by combining the RIKEN Accelerator-driven compact Neutron Source (RANS) system developed by the Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN) with a crystallographic texture measurement technique employing neutron diffraction developed by the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA).
It is expected that development of a new R&D cycle—combining routine R&D at the laboratory level with accelerator-driven compact neutron sources, and advanced R&D using large neutron experimental facilities—will lead to development of high-value-added materials and products, and accelerate spark innovation.