Freeze Casting: A Review of Processing, Microstructure and Properties via the Open Data Repository, FreezeCasting.net
Freeze-casting produces materials with complex, three-dimensional pore structures which may be tuned during the solidification process. The range of potential applications of freeze-cast materials is vast, and includes: structural materials, biomaterials, filtration membranes, pharmaceuticals, and foodstuffs. Fabrication of materials with application-specific microstructures is possible via freeze casting, however, the templating process is highly complex and the underlying principles are only partially understood. Here, we report the creation of a freeze-casting experimental data repository, which contains data extracted from ~800 different freeze-casting papers (as of August 2017). These data pertain to variables that link processing conditions to microstructural characteristics, and finally, mechanical properties. The aim of this work is to facilitate broad dissemination of relevant data to freeze-casting researchers, promote better informed experimental design, and encourage modeling efforts that relate processing conditions to microstructure formation and material properties. An initial, systematic analysis of these data is provided and key processing-structure-property relationships posited in the freeze-casting literature are discussed and tested against the database. Tools for data visualization and exploration available through the web interface are also provided.