Dr. Cao’s general areas of expertise include failure analysis, corrosion, metallurgy, materials science and fracture mechanics. He specializes in physical and mechanical metallurgy of engineering alloys and evaluating the effect of defects and microstructural inhomogeneity on mechanical properties through fracture mechanics and statistical methods. He has extensive processing, microstructural development and property development expertise utilizing optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), electron back scatter diffraction (EBSD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and variety of mechanical testing technique. Dr. Cao has extensive experience in fatigue life evaluations and predictions, damage tolerance analysis, fatigue crack initiation and propagation mechanisms, as well as finding solutions to fatigue critical component materials selection, designs and assessments.
While at Exponent, Dr. Cao has investigated failures associated with component design, materials selection, surface defects, corrosion and microstructure tailoring. Dr. Cao has helped clients evaluating weld microstructures and properties, as well as their influence on the properties of the systems in which the materials are used. He also has experience in failure analysis of battery and consumer electronics.
Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Cao was a research scientist at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where he evaluated the effects of surface roughness, porosity, and post treatments on fatigue properties of titanium alloys made through different additive manufacturing techniques. Prior to this, he was a research assistant at the University of Utah, where he received his doctoral degree in 2016. His thesis work revolved around the fabrication and evaluation of fatigue resistant powder metallurgy titanium components for use in automobiles and biomedical devices. He successfully improved the fatigue performance of powder metallurgy titanium alloy by 50% by carefully control the powder metallurgy processing and employment of heat treatments and consolidation techniques. Processing-defect-property relationships of powder metallurgy titanium alloys were evaluated through microstructure evaluations, quantitative fractography, fracture mechanics and statistical methods.
Additionally, Dr. Cao has worked as a smelting engineer in manufacturing cooling tubes, valves and turbines for power plant, and as a R&D engineer in developing target materials. He also has experience with cold and thermal spray coating technologies, as well as evaluation of coating properties at Hanyang University. He has also been a teaching assistant for the University of Utah course entitled “Experimental Techniques in Metallurgy."
CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS
- Ph.D., Metallurgical Engineering, University of Utah, 2016
- M.S., Materials Science and Engineering, Hanyang University, Korea, 2013
- B.S., Metallurgical Engineering, Northeastern University, 2010
- Mandarin Chinese
Cao F, Zhang T, Ryder MA, Lados DA. A review of the fatigue properties of additively manufactured Ti-6Al-4V. Journal of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials 2018; January 8 published online: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11837-017-2728-5.
Fang ZZ, Paramore JD, Sun P, Ravi Chandran KS, Zhang Y, Xia Y, Cao F, Koopman M, Free M. Powder metallurgy of titanium—past, present and future. International Materials Review 2017; August 28 published online: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09506608.2017.1366003.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS. The role of crack origin size and early stage crack growth on high cycle fatigue of powder metallurgy Ti-6Al-4V alloy. International Journal of Fatigue 2017; 102: 48-58.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS. Achieving high strength nano-structured powder metallurgy Ti-6Al-4V alloy through accelerated sintering at β-transus and hydrogenation-dehydrogenation treatment. Scripta Materialia 2017; 130: 22-26.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS, Kumar P, Sun P, Fang ZZ. New powder metallurgical approach to achieve high fatigue strength in Ti-6Al-4V alloy. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A 2016; 47(5): 2335-2345.
Ravi Chandran KS, Cao F, Newman JC. Fatigue crack growth in miniature specimens: the equivalence of ΔK-correlation and that based on the change in net-section strain energy density. Scripta Materialia 2016; 122: 18-21.
Kumar P, Ravi Chandran KS, Cao F, Koopman M, Fang ZZ. The nature of tensile ductility as controlled by extreme-sized pores in powder metallurgy Ti-6Al-4V alloy. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A 2016; 47(5): 2150-2161.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS. Fatigue performance of powder metallurgically manufactured Ti-6Al-4V alloy: a critical assessment and metallurgical approaches for improving fatigue strength. Journal of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials 2016; 68(3): 735-746.
Cao F, Kumar P, Koopman M, Lin C, Fang ZZ, Ravi Chandran KS. Understanding competing fatigue mechanisms in powder metallurgy Ti-6Al-4V alloy: role of crack initiation and duality of fatigue response. Materials Science and Engineering A 2015; 630: 139-145.
Cao F, Park H, Bae G, Lee C. Microstructure evolution of titanium nitride film during vacuum kinetic spraying. Journal of American Ceramic Society 2013; 96(1): 40-43.
Cao F, Park H, Heo J, Kwon J, Lee C. Effect of process gas flow on the coating microstructure and mechanical properties of vacuum kinetic sprayed TiN layers. Journal of Thermal Spray Technology 2013; 22(7): 1109-1119.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS, Kumar P. Achieving very high strength in powder metallurgy Ti-6Al-4V alloy through accelerated sintering at β-transus and hydrogenation-dehydrogenation treatment. Oral presentation, MS&T, Salt Lake City, UT, 2016.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS, Newman JC. Investigation of fatigue crack growth correlations in miniature specimens of Ti-6Al-4V alloy at varied applied stress levels based on finite-width correction factors for different boundary conditions. Oral presentation, International Conference on Fatigue Damage of Structural Materials XI, Hyannis, MA, 2016.
Cao F, Ravi Chandran KS, Kumar P, Sun P, Koopman M, Fang ZZ. Improved fatigue performance of PM Ti-6Al-4V alloy processed by hydrogen sintering and phase transformation of TiH2 powders. Oral presentation, The 13th World Conference on Titanium, San Diego, CA, 2015.
Cao F, Kumar P, Ravi Chandran KS. Fatigue behavior of PM Ti-6Al-4V alloy obtained by dehydrogenation of CIPed titanium hydride powder compacts. Oral presentation, MS&T, Pittsburgh, PA, 2014.
Research Scientist, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 2017
R&D Engineer, Anwell Digital Machinery, 2013
Smelting Engineer, Yantai Taihai Manoir Nuclear Equipment Co., Ltd., 2010-2011
International Journal of Fatigue
Materials Science and Engineering A
Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A
Journal of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials