Notice: For the latest information and guidance on Purdue's response to COVID-19 please visit:

Materials Processing in Manufacturing


Credit Hours:


Learning Objective:

Upon completion of this course the student is expected to:
  • identify elements or features on 2-D sections or images appropriate for quantitative description of microstructures of 3-D objects.
  • measure volume fraction of individual phases employing techniques of areal analysis, lineal analysis, and systematic point-count.
  • determine surface to volume ratio of grain boundaries and interfaces of particles dispersed in a matrix.
  • determine average grain size by lineal intercept method and to evaluate sizes of particles with regular shapes of a sphere, disk or cylinder from areal and lineal analyses.
  • assess size distribution of spherical particles in a matrix from measurements and analyses of diameters, areas and chords on 2-D sections.
  • characterize oriented structures with systems of lines and surfaces for types and degrees of orientation.
  • employ computer-aided procedures for image acquisition and data analysis of microstructural features.


A review will be presented of basic probability theory and statistical analysis, with particular emphasis on terms and definitions of a microstructure. The properties accessible to quantification, the basic stereological relationships and the mathematical foundations, and the microstructural tools needed to quantify the structure will be emphasized. The last one-third of the course will cover applications of quantitative metallography to problems in failure analysis, solidification, heat treatment, phase equilibria, and deformation behavior.

Topics Covered:


Applied / Theory:

50 / 50


"Quantitative Microscopy", ed. by R. T. DeHoff and F. N. Rhines, (McGraw-Hill, New York, NY 1968).
"Quantitative Image Analysis of Microstructures", ed. by H. E. Exner and H. P. Hougardy, (DGM Informationsgesellschaft, Germany, 1988).
"Quantitative Stereology", E.E. Underwood, (Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA, 1970).
Typed class notes.

Computer Requirements:

ProEd Minimum Requirements:


Tuition & Fees: