Dr. Trenkle’s expertise is in metallurgy with an emphasis on macro- and micro- structural characterization, processing, and mechanical performance of a range of metal alloys, including thin films and coatings used in electronic and mechanical applications. He also has experience in performing detailed failure analysis of these materials after they have been placed into service. Additionally, Dr. Trenkle has studied specialty welding of thermally sensitive materials, characterizing the fracture toughness and fracture surfaces as a function of welding parameters.
Dr. Trenkle has extensive experience conducting and interpreting results from several chemical and microstructural characterization techniques, including x-ray diffraction (XRD), energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and x-ray fluorescence (XRF). He is also skilled at developing specialized indentation methods, measuring fracture toughness, and performing differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) in order to characterize the mechanical and thermophysical properties of materials. During his career, he has extensively used magnetron sputtering, electrodeposition (electroplating), and arc welding to produce a variety of metal alloys. Dr. Trenkle also has experience conducting testing in accordance with ASTM and Telcordia standards, often designing specialized testing apparatuses to meet the testing requirements.
Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Trenkle worked as a process development engineer at Xtalic Corporation where he was responsible for research and development of a new electro-plated metal alloy for use in electronic connectors. He designed and characterized the alloy, chemistry, and process so that the new product could be easily integrated into existing manufacturing systems. He also was a Postdoctoral Associate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he developed a nanoindenter capable of operating at elevated temperatures in inert atmospheres. Also while at MIT, Dr. Trenkle assisted in teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in mechanical behavior of materials and physical metallurgy.