Garritt Tucker

Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Garritt TuckerProfessor Tucker joined the Mechanical Engineering department at Mines in the summer of 2017 as an Assistant Professor, and is active in the interdisciplinary Materials Science program at Mines. Before joining the faculty at Mines, he spent 4 years as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University (Philadelphia, PA), and 2 years as a Postdoctoral Research Appointee at Sandia National Laboratories (Albuquerque, NM) in the Computational Materials and Data Science group. While at Drexel, he was awarded the Outstanding Teacher Award in 2015 and the TMS Young Leader Professional Development Award in 2016. Professor Tucker earned his Ph.D. in 2011 from the Georgia Institute of Technology (School of Materials Science and Engineering), and a B.S. in 2004 from Westminster College (Salt Lake City, UT) majoring in both Physics and Mathematics. During his time at Westminster and Georgia Tech, he received several distinctions including the Outstanding Physics Senior Award, Academic All-American (Soccer), and a Sigma Xi nomination.

His research group at Mines integrates high-performance computing and theory to discover the fundamental structure-property relationships of materials that will enable the predictive design of advanced materials with tunable properties. Of particular interest are materials where defects and interfacial-driven properties can be effectively tuned or controlled to enable property enhancement, such as nanocrystalline alloys, multicomponent laminates, materials for energy storage, 2D materials, and hierarchical metals. At the core of his group’s approach is to develop collaborations and programs that effectively mesh computation with experiment to tailor functional materials.

Recent work by Prof Tucker and his group has provided unprecedented understanding into a new defect in layered materials that influences not only the strength of the material, but also other advantageous properties such as strain reversibility and kinking non-linear elastic response. His work has also addressed many outstanding questions regarding grain boundary properties and structure in metals, and extended this idea to modeling realistic material microstructures. A significant focus has been on providing a fundamental understanding of the mechanics and physics of nanocrystalline alloys – quantifying the roles of grain boundaries, dislocations, and twinning. Their work has recently highlighted how microstructural features can be altered to systemically tailor the operative nanoscale deformation mechanisms within metallic materials. Prof. Tucker’s research group leverages a number of computational methods to research materials and their properties, such as density functional theory, atomistic modeling (e.g., Molecular Dynamics and Statics), phase-field models, and a number of multiscale modeling approaches. Beyond those traditional computational methods, Prof. Tucker and his research group also employ innovative post-processing tools for data analysis and visualization, and pursue novel informatics techniques to build predictive methodologies for materials design.


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  • BS, Physics and Mathematics, Westminster College
  • PhD, Materials Science and Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology

Recent Projects

  • Mechanical properties and thermo-mechanical stability of Nanostructured Metal Alloys
  • Automated development of material microstructures for High-Performance Computing
  • Multi-resolution studies of ripplocations: a new defect in layered solids
  • Predictive design of microstructures: engineering grain boundaries

Recent Publications

  • M.W. Barsoum and G.J. Tucker, ‘Deformation of layered solids: Ripplocations not basal dislocations’, Scripta Materialia (2017)
  • J. Gruber, X.W. Zhou, R.E. Jones, S.R. Lee, and G.J. Tucker, ‘Molecular dynamics studies of defect formation during heteroepitaxial growth of InGaN alloys on (0001) GaN surfaces’, Journal of Applied Physics (2017)
  • Y. Zhang, G.J. Tucker, and J.R. Trelewicz, ‘Stress-assisted grain growth in nanocrystalline metals: Grain boundary mediated mechanisms and stabilization through alloying’, Acta Materialia (2017)
  • J. Griggs, A.C. Lang, J. Gruber, G.J. Tucker, M.L. Taheri, and M.W. Barsoum, ‘Spherical nanoindentation, modeling, and transmission electron microscopy evidence for ripplocations in Ti3SiC2’, Acta Materialia (2017)
  • J. Gruber, H. Lim, F. Abdeljawad, S. Foiles, and G.J. Tucker, ‘Development of physically based atomistic microstructures: The effect on the mechanical response of polycrystals’, Computational Materials Science (2017)
  • C.M. Shumeyko, E.B. Webb, and G.J. Tucker, ‘Effects of grain boundary structure on lithium transport in graphite’, Molecular Simulation (2016)
  • D. Foley and G.J. Tucker, ‘Quantifying grain boundary damage tolerance with atomistic simulations’, Modelling and Simulation in Materials Science and Engineering (2016)
  • J. Gruber, A.C. Lang, J. Griggs, M.L. Taheri, G.J. Tucker, and M.W. Barsoum, ‘Evidence for bulk ripplocations in layered solids’, Scientific Reports (2016)
  • R. Liu, J. Gruber, D. Bhattacharyya, G.J. Tucker, and A. Antoniou, ‘Mechanical properties of nanocrystalline nanoporous platinum’, Acta Materialia (2016)
  • G.J. Tucker, D. Foley, and J. Gruber, ‘Continuum Metrics for Atomistic Simulation Analysis’, Multiscale Materials Modeling for Nanomechanics, Springer (2016).