Dr Daniel Miracle, of the United States Airforce’s Air Force Research Laboratory (US AFRL), Wright-Patterson Airforce Base, Ohio, USA, will receive The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society (TMS)’s Fellow award. The award recognises leading authorities and contributors to the practice of metallurgy, materials science and technology.
Miracle is a senior scientist in the AFRL’s Materials and Manufacturing doctorate. He is said to have made seminal scientific contributions in advanced aerospace metallic materials that include intermetallic compounds for high-temperature applications, metal matrix composites, metallic glasses, super-high strength aluminium alloys for use at cryogenic temperatures, low-cost titanium alloys and a new class of ‘high-entropy’ alloys for high-temperature structural applications.
Other accomplishments reportedly include leading programmatic efforts to demonstrate these technologies in advanced Air Force applications, including a successful engine test of a new gas turbine vane weighing 50% less than current alloys and a sub-scale test of a compressor impeller that can significantly reduce both cost and weight of advanced liquid rocket engines. He supported early efforts to collect and analyse microstructures in three dimensions, which have spun-off to form small business ventures, with automated units now being used in national labs, in an Air Logistics Centre, and in universities around the world.
Shortly after the fall of the Berlin wall, Miracle led a major technology initiative in Ukraine which focused former Soviet scientists on US Air Force needs. In recent years, he is said to have helped build technical alliances between the US Department of Defense and the Ministries of Defence in the United Kingdom, Japan and India.
Miracle also led the initial formation of the Air Force Metals Affordability Initiative, a programme teaming aerospace industrial competitors to achieve common, pre-competitive goals. The initiative has now been running for seventeen years and resulted in eighty-five technology insertions.
He was nominated for the fellow award by Professor Chris Schuh, Chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Speaking on the nomination, Schuh stated, “Miracle has been one of the most important thought leaders in structural materials over the past several decades. He has not only solved some of the most challenging fundamental scientific problems, but has also transformed this new knowledge into practical benefit. He attacks the most challenging problems and opens new fields of study, producing science and technology advances that improve the world and advance human understanding.”
According to TMS, Miracle was selected based on his original and pioneering contributions on a range of structural metallic alloys, and for technical and strategic leadership in the international technical community. Miracle stated, “Throughout my career, I’ve relied on TMS programming to keep abreast of new advances in my fields of study and to stay connected with my peers. Being elected as a TMS Fellow has special significance for me personally as a sign of recognition from the broad TMS membership of technical peers that I respect.”
Headquartered in the United States and having ties abroad, The Minerals, Metals, and Materials Society is a professional organisation which encompasses the entire range of materials and engineering, from minerals processing and primary metals production to basic research and the advanced applications of materials. The Fellow award will be presented to Miracle during TMS’s annual awards ceremony on March 14, 2018, in Phoenix, Arizona, USA.