University of Western Ontario - Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Engineering Science


Mechanical and Materials Engineering




First, I would like to acknowledge Meridian Technologies Inc., for their contributions in the materials, equipment and facilities that made this work possible.

Second, this project was also partly funded By AUTO21 Network of Centers of Excellence, an automotive research and development program focusing on issues relating to the automobile in the 21st century. AUTO21, member of the Networks of Centers of Excellence of Canada program is funded by the Natrual Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERCT), the Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and multiple industries.

Third, I would like to thank the invaluable inputs and guidance provided by Dr.Jon weiler, during the course of this research.

Fourth, I would like to thank Dr. Klassen’s group research for their assistance during microindentation testing procedure.

Finally, I would like to thank my advisor, Dr, Jeff Wood for his patience, guidance, and generosity over the past two years. His constant support and encouragement were indispensable factors behind the successful completion of this research.