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MT 221 Introduction to Materials Engineering

This guide will assist students working on the term paper for MT-221 with Anthony Koprowski

Welcome to the MT 221 Research Guide!

This research guide will assist students in finding sources for the Term Paper in Anthony Koprowski's MT 221 class. If you have any questions, please contact a librarian using the chat in the bottom right of this guide!


Your term paper will address the following subject:

“You are producing batteries for the electric car industry.  What are the manufacturing steps to make a 100 kWh battery that produces 200kw/260CP power?”

And your paper will include the answers to these questions:

  1. What battery type are you going to use, (Li-Ion, Na-NiCl2, Ni-MH, Li-S, other)? 

  2. What is the carbon footprint of ALL of the materials used in the battery? 

  3. What are the manufacturing steps in the production of the battery?  Give the major steps (ten (10) minimum).  This can be a flow chart. 

  4. What type of environmental impact does the manufacturing of batteries produce for all of the components?  This would be their environmental impact statement. 

  5. What is the actual life Vs the expected life of the battery?  How many years/charges does it hold Vs expected years/charges. 

  6. How can the batteries be recycled? 

  7. What is the return on investment (ROI) and total carbon footprint for the manufacturing of batteries? 


About your required sources:

A minimum of five (5) references must be cited and ALL sources you used must be scholarly articles: in APA format. 

What is a Scholary Article?

Features of a Scholarly Article:

  1. Written by experts - look for an authors credentials or affiliations (degrees, college or university, etc.)
  2. Written for other experts in the field.
  3. Use scholarly language with technical, discipline specific vocabulary.
  4. Provide verifiable and reliable evidence for claims. Sources used in research or in writing the article is listed in a Reference list or bibliography,
  5. Articles may be Peer Reviewed. The articles may go through an editorial process where the article and information are reviewed for accuracy prior to publication.

Identifying Scholarly Articles:

  1. Databases like OneSearch, Academic Search Complete and Applied Science Technology let you check a box to limit to Peer-Reviewed articles (you should still double check the features of articles on your results list).
  2. Look at the source or publication title. Is it a journal? Google the publication title and look at the publication process for that journal or publication.
  3. Is the article long? Scholarly articles are detailed and are usually 5 or more pages. Sometimes 20-30 pages.
  4. Is there an abstract or summary? Most scholarly articles will have a short paragraph that summarizes the article.
  5. Does it include many parts such as an introduction, methodology, results, discussion and conclusion?
  6. Is there a lengthy notes, references, bibliography or works cited list at the end?

 batteries journal cover image                            Nature journal cover image SAE International Journal of Alternative Powertrains                         SAE International Journal of Electrified Vehicles

Search Tips

Step 1: Identify Keywords

Look at your assignment topic and pull out the keywords. Library Databases don't respond well to searching for large phrases or sentences. Keywords I notice in your assignment are:

batteries
car industry
manufacturing
battery type (Li-Ion, Na-NiCl2, Ni-MH, Li-S)
carbon footprint
environmental impact
battery life
recycling
return on investment

Step 2: Where will you search?
Library databases are a great place to start searching because we have access to subscription databases which find articles that otherwise might be behind a paywall on the open web. Go to the Find Scholarly Articles tab to find links to relevant databases.

Step 3: Refine your search

Test out your keyword searches. Try different approaches. You will probably have to find many different articles to piece together all of the information needed your research paper.

Step 4: Ask for help

If you have spent more than a few hours researching your topic and are getting frustrated, ask for help! Librarians are available via email, chat or in person!