A Commentary on: “Reaction Kinetics in Processes of Nucleation and Growth”*
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The years 1937 through 1941 mark an important period in the history of metallurgy. In 1939, William A. Johnson and Robert F. Mehl of Carnegie Institute of Technology presented their work on “Reaction Kinetics in Processes of Nucleation and Growth” at the February meeting of the American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers. The manuscript for this presentation had been submitted some weeks earlier in December 1938 and the article was published in the summer of 1939. Melvin Avrami of Columbia University, who was present at this meeting, published the following series of articles between 1939 and 1941: “Kinetics of Phase Change. I: General Theory,” “Kinetics of Phase Change. II: Transformation–Time Relations for Random Distribution of Nuclei,” and “Granulation, Phase Change and Microstructure: Kinetics of Phase Change. III.” In 1937, Andrei N. Kolmogorov of Moscow University had published his article on “The Statistical Theory of Metal Crystallization.”1
The assistance of M. Marsteller, D. Beck and M. Harvey of the Engineering and Science Library at Carnegie Mellon University in obtaining copies of Johnson’s doctoral thesis and the appendices to the article are gratefully acknowledged. M. Marsteller deserves a special note of thanks because obtaining all five appendices required a personal trip to the Library of Congress. The help of J. Harbster of the Library of Congress in creating an electronic version of the original microfiche of the appendices is greatly appreciated. A. Darbal is thanked for extracting the figures in the appendices from the electronic version. D. Moscatello is thanked for typing the text of Appendix A. Special thanks go to J. Bottles for typing the text of the remaining appendices and for typing all of the very many equations in the five appendices, leaving me only the task of making corrections.
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