Date of Award
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering - (M.S.)
Kwabena A. Narh
As part of a joint effort by Cornell University and NJIT to find a replacement for mercury as a pressuring medium for P-V-T devices, we investigated the effect of liquid gallium on four thermoplastics: two semi-crystalline ( high density polyethylene and polypropylene ) and two amorphous ( polystyrene and polymethylmethacrylate ). Test specimens were covered with liquid gallium and held in vacuum oven at temperatures close to their melting points for up to two weeks. Change in weight after treatment with gallium was measured, along with tensile testing and particle analysis using dispersion x-ray spectroscopy. The results are compared with specimens treated under identical conditions but without contact with gallium. The gallium was found to cause no change in the mechanical properties of the polymers tested. Its diffusion into all the polymers was also negligible. These results encourage the use of liquid gallium in place of mercury in various devices.
Dwivedi, Vivek P., "The effect of liquid gallium on plastics" (1995). Theses. 1184.