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Brian W. Sheldon

Phone: +1 401 863 2866

My research focuses on the formation and mechanical behavior of advanced ceramic materials, particularly thin films and coatings. We are primarily interested in understanding fundamental mechanisms, however these materials are used in a wide range of applications. Currently, we are devoting significant efforts to electrode materials for Li ion batteries. Our ongoing work is also directly related to materials for MEMS, nanocomposite protective coatings, and oxides for sensors and fuel cells.


Professor Sheldon completed his Sc.D. in Materials Science and Engineering at M.I.T. in 1988. Before joining Brown, he held research staff positions at Amoco Oil and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He currently serves as Editor of the Journal of Materials Science. Other recent activities include chairing the Gordon Research Conference on High Temperature Materials (2006), and serving as Invited Visiting Professor at the Insitut National Polytechnique de Toulouse (Toulouse, France).


Professor Sheldon's current research is focused in three general areas. Our largest current effort is on understanding stress evolution and mechanical degradation in electrodes for Li ion batteries. This includes work on carbon materials (in collaboration with Prof. Hurt), composite electrodes containing Si and C, and several different oxides.

A second current research effort is based on compositionally induced stresses due to oxidation-reduction in non-stoichiometric oxides such as ceria, a material which is of considerable interest for solid oxide fuel cells.

The third major focus of Prof. Sheldon's research is ceramic composite coatings reinforced with nanotubes and nanofibers. This is an interdisciplinary collaboration with Prof. Curtin, where our prior work provides the first direct evidence of toughening mechanisms in ceramic composites reinforced with carbon nanotubes.

Prof. Sheldon's group regularly collaborates with a number of other researchers. At Brown, these include Profs. Chason, Rankin, and Webster in the Materials Group, Profs. Bower, Curtin, Gao, Kim, and Shenoy in the Solid Mechanics Group, and Prof. Hurt in the FTCP Group. We also collaborate with Prof. Barbara Walden at Trinity College, Dr. Sean Hearne at Sandia National Laboratory, Dr. Gyula Eres at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Drs. Yue Qi and Xingcheng Xiao at General Motors.


S.B. (Chemical Engin), Sc.D. (Materials Science)


Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering
Thermodynamics of Materials
Kinetic Processes in Materials Science
Ceramic Materials

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Curriculum Vitae

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