TMS2018 Professional Development Events

Introduction to Alloy Thermodynamics: the CALPHAD Approach and Beyond

Sunday, March 11, 2018 • 8:30 a.m. to Noon
Phoenix Convention Center
Alloy Phases Committee; Integrated Computational Materials Engineering Committee
Wei Xiong, University of Pittsburgh; Ursula Kattner, National Institute of Standards and Technology; Shun-Li Shang, Pennsylvania State University; Ji-Cheng Zhao, The Ohio State University; Shuanglin Chen, CompuTherm LCC; Paul Mason, Thermo-Calc Software Inc.; Richard Otis, Jet Propulsion Laboratory


CALPHAD (Calculation of Phase Diagrams) is one of the most powerful techniques for Materials Genome and Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME) modeling. The development of the CALPHAD-based method has taken place so quickly that it is not described adequately in conventional textbooks, nor is it covered properly in the majority of existing undergraduate or graduate degree courses in materials science. Therefore, there is a high need of one professional development course of CALPHAD.

Who Attends?

Students and researchers who work in the field of phase transformation, phase equilibria, or have a demand of computational materials science using the thermodynamic and diffusion modeling. Industrial engineers are also expected to gain valuable insights to the CALPHAD method and their engineering applications. Course attendees will obtain a comprehensive understanding of CALPHAD fundamentals, experimental techniques (including high throughput methods), and materials and processing design based on phase diagram informatics. Topics will also cover engineering applications with case studies.

Topical outline

  1. Overview of CALPHAD methodology
  2. Density functional theory calculations and CALPHAD approach for alloy thermodynamics and diffusion
  3. Advanced experimental techniques, e.g. high throughput experiments for materials database development
  4. Case studies—Examples of the use of CALPHAD for a range of materials applications

It is expected that the course lecture will provide both beginners and experienced researchers with valuable information of overview, technical details, and development progress.

Instructor Biographies

Wei Xiong is the director of the Physical Metallurgy and Materials Design Laboratory at University of Pittsburgh. Xiong got his PhD degree from KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden and Doctor of Engineering degree from Central South University in China. In 2012, he moved from Sweden to the United States after his PhD research program. He stayed one year at the University of Wisconsin – Madison (2012-2013) before joining Northwestern University as a research associate for alloy design research (2013-2016). Using the CALPHAD-based ICME methods, Xiong works in materials design and process optimization, which covers a wide range of inorganic materials, and focuses on phase equilibria and phase transformations. He has more than 40 publications related to physical metallurgy, including 7 invited book chapters. Xiong serves on the ASM International Alloy Phase Diagrams Committee, TMS Alloy Phases Committee, TMS High Temperature Alloys Committee, and TMS Additive Manufacturing Committee. He is the TMS ICME education sub-committee chair. He has received several academic awards, which include: Best Paper Awards of the CALPHAD journal in 2012 and 2013, and TMS FMD Young Leader Professional Development Award 2015. Xiong serves as an associate editor of journal: Science and Technology of Advanced Materials.

Ursula Kattner worked first at the Max-Planck-Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart as research scientist after receiving her Ph.D. from the University of Stuttgart, Germany. She joined the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA, in 1985. Her present research interests are thermodynamics and phase equilibria, computational thermodynamics employing the CALPHAD method, development of multi-component thermodynamic databases, and coupling of phase equilibria calculations with process simulation tools. She has received numerous awards, including the U.S. Department of Commerce Gold Medal Award, the ASM International J. Willard Gibbs Phase Equilibria Award and is a Fellow of ASM International. She has authored and co-authored more than 100 papers and book chapters.

Shun-Li Shang is a senior scientist at Pennsylvania State University’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering since 2016. After receiving his Ph.D. in Materials and Metallurgy from the General Research Institute for Nonferrous Metals, China, he joined Delft University of Technology, Netherlands, in 2002, and then, Pennsylvania State University, in 2005 for postdoctoral studies. Shang’s research interests include computational thermodynamics, first-principles calculations, and phonon calculations to study thermodynamic, diffusion, and mechanical properties for ordered and disordered alloys, compounds, and functional materials. He has published over 185 peer-reviewed papers with an H-index of 34 (Google Scholar).

JC Zhao is a Professor and Associate Chair of Research at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) of The Ohio State University (OSU). He received his Ph.D. in MSE from Lehigh University in 1995 and went to work at GE Global Research until December 2017 (12 years). He then joined OSU as a tenured faculty in January 2008 and was named Associate Chair for Research in 2015. From January 2014 to August 2017, Zhao was on assignment (85% appointment) as a Program Director at the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E). His main research interests include phase diagrams, computational thermodynamics, diffusion, phase transformations, alloy design, high-throughput/combinatorial materials research, and high-efficiency energy systems. Zhao developed the diffusion-multiple approach and co-developed several micron-resolution materials property measurement tools. He is a co-inventor of 48 U.S. patents.

Shuanglin Chen received his B.S. degree in Physical Chemistry of Metallurgy from the University of Science Technology-Beijing, PRC in 1984 and his Ph.D. in Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in 1994. He joined CompuTherm LLC in 1996. His main research interests include thermodynamic models, global optimization, algorithm design and computer programming. He is the key developer of Pandat software. He served as the chair of Alloy Phases Committee of TMS from 2016-2018.

Paul Mason graduated in 1989 from South Bank University in London, UK with an Hons degree in Physical Sciences and Scientific Computing. On graduation, he joined the Atomic Energy Research Establishment at Harwell, UK and worked in the area of civil nuclear power for 14 years focusing on materials R&D issues, particularly at high temperatures. Mason began his career mostly involved in experimental work and then moved into the modeling realm. In 2004, Mason was appointed President of Thermo-Calc Software Inc when the Swedish based company, Thermo-Calc Software AB, started a U.S. subsidiary. Since this time, Mason has been responsible for the marketing and sales, technical support, training and customer relations for the North American market which includes the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Mason has been actively involved in the TMS ICME Committee since its formation and was chair of the Committee from 2014 through 2016.

Richard Otis is a materials technologist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, where he builds CALPHAD-based thermodynamic models for spaceflight applications. He is the creator and lead developer of the open-source CALPHAD modeling software pycalphad ( Otis was awarded a NASA Space Technology Research Fellowship in 2014, and received a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from Pennsylvania State University in 2016. His research interests include thermodynamics of materials, computational metallurgy, Bayesian statistics, and additive manufacturing.


Registering As Advanced On-site
Member $325 $375
Non-member $375 $425
Student $175 $225