Transparent Alloys-SEBA (Transparent Alloys-SEBA) - 12.13.17

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
The aim of the Transparent Alloys-SEBA experiment is to study the morphological instabilities of directional solidified, transparent binary eutectic alloys under purely diffusive conditions. This experiment provides a real-time observation of the dynamics of eutectic front structures with a micron-scale resolution, over a large (centimetric) space scale, and over long (several 10 hours) periods of time. These observations are strongly sensitive to convective motions in liquid, which, in ordinary conditions on earth, entail a detrimental redistribution of the solute on a scale comparable to the container size. Such convective motions are suppressed in microgravity.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by S. Rex, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Information provided courtesy of the Erasmus Experiment Archive.
Experiment Details


Principal Investigator(s)
S. Rex, Germany

G. Faivre, France
U. Hecht, Germany
S. Akamatsu, France
S. Bottin-Rousseau, France
Ludo Froyen, Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
Lorenz Ratke, Institute for Space Simulation, Cologne, Germany
R. Napolitano, United States
M. Serefoglu, Turkey

European Space Agency (ESA), Noordwijk, Netherlands

Sponsoring Space Agency
European Space Agency (ESA)

Sponsoring Organization
European Space Agency

Research Benefits
Scientific Discovery

ISS Expedition Duration
September 2017 - February 2018

Expeditions Assigned

Previous Missions
Information Pending

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Experiment Description

Research Overview

  • The SEBA research team focuses on the dynamics of formation of rod-like eutectic structures (a regular dispersion of thin fibers of one phase into a continuous matrix of the other eutectic solid). Such eutectic microstructures result from a coupled growth of the two eutectic solids. Ideally, the coupled-growth dynamics leads to the formation, in steady regime, of periodic patterns with a hexagonal symmetry along the solidification front.
  • The specific goals of the Transparency Alloys-SEBA experiment include:
    • Study of the formation and the relaxation of topological defects in rod-like structures.
    • Study of the rod-to-lamellar transition of eutectic growth patterns.
    • Study of the forcing effects of the distortions of the thermal gradient.

Information Pending

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Space Applications
Industry partners to the projects seek to optimize ground processes, and have a direct interest in the knowledge that is gained from the experiments. This can, in turn, find its way into the development of new light-weight, high-performance structural materials for space applications.

Earth Applications
The generation of vitally important benchmark data on orbit that will improve numerical models on Earth describing solidification processes. The ultimate goal of this research is to increase our understanding in materials solidification processes in order to help develop new stronger lighter-weight materials which will have a significant impact on the industry for solving the most significant issues facing our planet such as fuel efficiency and consumption and recycling of materials. Results of this research will have cost reducing effects across numerous industries and in turn make these industries more competitive and attractive to investment.

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Operational Requirements and Protocols

  • Number of experiment runs per cartridge/sample: approx. 10 minimum, required 5 runs per sample).
  • Upload of samples within -20°C and +30°C.
  • Experiment requires 35.2 hours/run.
  • Sixty days of science operations.
  • It is desired for pictures and/or video of the crew installing and uninstalling the facility in the Microgravity Sciences Glovebox (MSG). Also, video during cartridge exchange is preferred.

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Decadal Survey Recommendations

Information Pending

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Results/More Information

Information Pending

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Related Websites

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