seal  Purdue News

October 6, 2003

Purdue-owned materials properties data now online

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Searchable, electronic databases created by a West Lafayette-based company will give engineers and scientists access to almost a half-century's worth of materials properties data assembled by Purdue University.

Under an exclusive licensing agreement, the Purdue Research Foundation has granted CINDAS LLC the rights to Purdue's research results on properties data (mechanical, physical, electrical, thermal, optical, etc.) for particular types of materials.

"This data is considered to be the most complete collection of its kind in the world," said Joseph Hornett, the foundation's senior vice president and treasurer. "It will allow engineers, researchers and other scientists to perform comparative analysis of different materials, optimize material selection and ensure material compatibility, resulting in safer, more reliable designs."

Over the past 45 years, Purdue's Center for Information and Numerical Data Analysis and Synthesis (CINDAS) complied and analyzed materials properties data. In the early 1980s, the center's data collection was published in hard-back volumes entitled "Thermophysical Properties of Matter – the TPRC Data Series."

"Purdue published more than 1,000 of the 13 volume sets (17,000 pages per set)," said Frank Mason, president of CINDAS LLC. "They sold quickly and, since then, Purdue has received numerous requests to post the information electronically."

To address these requests, CINDAS LLC was formed to provide the TPRC Data Series in an electronic, searchable version entitled "Thermophysical Properties of Matter Database" (TPMD).

"This electronic database of critically evaluated data will become essential for product designers," Mason said. "How is heat transferred through the material? How does it cool down? When researchers need to know how different materials react under varying conditions, they want the best available data at their fingertips."

In addition to the TPMD, CINDAS LLC will offer a second product called the "Microelectronics Packaging Materials Database" (MPMD). It contains information on the thermal, mechanical, electrical and physical properties of materials used in the microelectronics packaging industry. Purdue, in conjunction with Semiconductor Research Corp., developed this database. Over the past 20 years, Semiconductor Research Corp. has provided more than $460 million to sponsor semiconductor research. The MPMD data has been generated through critical analysis and evaluation of data compiled from the literature, as well as through experimental measurements performed at Purdue and other universities.

"The MPMD is a unique source of reliable materials properties data and supports leading-edge packaging design and manufacturing, selecting materials and performing compatibility checks," Mason said.

Both databases can be searched by the name of the material, the desired property or a partial name. All datasets contain the composition of the material, the experimental conditions, the raw or smoothed data, references and dynamic graphical display. The same properties of different materials can be compared on the same graph. Data also may be exported and users can add or delete proprietary data.

CINDAS LLC will continue to update and expand the databases. The information for the updates and expansion will come from materials data collected during Purdue's collaboration with the U.S. Department of the Defense from the mid-1970s through the mid-1990s. During that time, Purdue's CINDAS operated five Information Analysis Centers for the Department of the Defense. Funded with millions of federal dollars, these centers analyzed the thermophysical, mechanical and electronic properties of high-temperature materials, ceramics, metals and metal matrix composites.

Research within these centers led to volumes of critically evaluated data on mechanical, thermophysical, electrical, optical and thermoradiative properties of materials such as intermetallic alloys, aluminides, silicides, beryllides, ceramic matrix composites, mercury, cadmium telluride, and selected infrared window and dome materials.

Access to the data may be purchased or leased. The data will be provided on CD-ROM or as a Web-based service. Leased databases will be updated automatically with additional information that CINDAS LLC plans to incorporate into its existing products. The company's Web page is located at

CINDAS LLC's staff members include chemical, mechanical, materials and industrial engineers, as well as chemists and computer scientists.

Writer: Jeanine Phipps, (765) 496-3133;


Frank Mason, (765) 746-2039,; P.O. Box 3814, West Lafayette, IN 47996-3814

Joseph Hornett, (765) 494-8645,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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