Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Dusan P. Sekulic


The presence of micrometeoroids and space debris in open space raises the question of a mitigation of the damage caused by a possible impact on the man-made structures such as space shuttles, satellites, and the International Space Station. A method achieving metallic sealed hole would be of an interest for development. This dissertation studies a surface tension driven capillary filling/sealing phenomenon in a controlled atmosphere brazing process of aluminum. The filled vs. non-filled results are predictable using minimization of energy, which shows that the outcomes depend heavily on prescribed configurations of the hole. Equilibrium models show excellent agreement with experimental results. It has been concluded that to fill an open hole by liquid aluminum in surface tension dominant cases, a deeper and narrower hole is favorable for a successful filling. To facilitate the filling process, the ability of liquid to migrate through edges is essential and has been shown experimentally in both aluminum brazing case and the benchmark silicone-oil/polystyrene system. The amount of liquid formed from the cladding layer has been evaluated and is not the limiting factor for filled/non-filled outcomes in discussed configurations.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

Funding Information

NASA Physical Sciences Research Program Grant# NNX17AB52G (2016-2020); National Science Foundation Grant# NSF-CBET-1235759 (2014-2016); Gränges AB, Finspång, Sweden (2014)

Included in

Manufacturing Commons