Introduction: Tools in Materials Research

Joseph Martin, Cyrus C.M. Mody

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionaryAcademic


The science of materials has contributed to changes in our civilization as pervasive as they are profound. The ways we travel, communicate, wage war, build buildings, dress, heal, play sports, read, listen to music, use energy, and care for the young, the old, and the vulnerable have all been shaped and reshaped by our knowledge and mastery of metals, semiconductors, organic and biocompatible materials, gels, plastics, polymers, plasmas, and other substances. But our large-scale historical understanding of materials research is still surprisingly flimsy. We might say of materials research, as common as it is, what Clifford Geertz said of common sense: “it lies so artlessly before our eyes it is almost impossible to see”….

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBetween Making and Knowing
Subtitle of host publicationTools in the History of Materials Research
EditorsJoseph Martin, Cyrus Mody
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing Company
ISBN (Electronic)978-981-120-764-8
ISBN (Print)978-981-120-762-4
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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