Disciplinary Research Areas

Mechanical Science and Engineering

Mechanics and Materials

Research Areas: Acoustics; Multi-body dynamics; Fatigue and fracture processes; Friction and wear; Biomechanics; Plasticity; Composites; Microelectronic materials; Materials under extreme loading conditions; Irradiation hardening; Nanomechanics of materials; Multiscale computational methods.

Participating faculty: Kurt Anderson, Terry Blanchet, Suvranu De, Nikhil Koratkar, Jie Lian, Emily Liu, Antoinette Maniatty, Catalin Picu, Henry Scarton, Mark Shephard, John Tichy, Daniel Walczyk, and Lucy Zhang.

Thermal and Fluids Engineering

Research Areas: Energy efficiency and sustainability; Advanced microfluidics for thermal management; System level thermal management, heat conduction and solid-state thermoelectric energy conversion in nanostructured materials; Nanoscale thermal metrology; Interfacial heat transfer; Convection and phase-change in microchannels; Structured surfaces for enhanced heat transfer; Nanostructured thermal interface materials; Thermal energy storage materials; Heat generation and dissipation in radio frequency heated magnetic nanoparticles; Microsystems for energy harvesting; Plasmonic nanoparticles spectrally coupled with luminescent solar concentrators; Loop heat pipes; and Combustion.

Participating faculty: Theodorian Borca-Tascuic, Diana Andra Borca-Tascuic, Amir Hirsa, Michael Jensen, Jie Lian, Matthew Oehlschlaeger, Zvi Rusak, Henry Scarton, Richard Smith, Lucy Zhang, and Wei Zhou.

Design and Manufacturing

Research Areas: Research areas: Design methodology in general and mechanical engineering design techniques in particular; Tribology, Metrology; Rapid prototyping; Flexible manufacturing; Micro/nano-scale manufacturing (subtractive and additive techniques); Process modeling; Material design for manufacturing; Sustainable manufacturing; Fiber-composite processing; Fuel-cell manufacturing; Bio-medical manufacturing; New manufacturing techniques; Operation of manufacturing facilities; CAD/CAM; Diagnostics and controls.

Participating faculty: Terry Blanchet, Antoinette Maniatty, Sandipan Mishra, Johnson Samuel, Daniel Walczyk, and John Wen.

Dynamics and Controls

Research Areas: Adaptive and Smart Optics Systems; Intelligent Building Systems; Control of Micro/Nano-scale Manufacturing; Learning Control Systems; Nonlinear, Robust and Adaptive Control, Human-in-the-loop Control Design.
Participating faculty:John Wen, Sandipan Mishra, and Kurt Anderson.

Aerospace Science and Engineering

Fluid Dynamics/Aerodynamics

Research Areas: Experimental, Numerical, and Theoretical fluid mechanics; Advanced Aerodynamic Flow Control techniques, Passive and Active; Aerodynamics of low, moderate and high Reynolds number flows; Manned and unmanned aerial vehicle aerodynamics; Acoustics and vibrations; Compressible flows; Wind energy.

Participating faculty: Michael Amitay, Jason Hicken, Amir Hirsa, Assad Oberai, Zvi Rusak, Onkar Sahni , Henry Scarton, and Lucy Zhang.

Advanced Structures/Materials

Research Areas: Active Structures, Morphing Structures, Cellular Structures, Structures with integrated damping capability, Energy absorption capability; Advanced materials including piezoelectric materials, shape memory alloys and polymers, electrorheological and magnetrorheological fluids, nano-materials; Advanced composites, bio-composites; Advanced structural analysis methods, Nonlinear aeroelasticity, nonlinear multi-body dynamics; and Computational Structural Dynamics.

Participating faculty: Farhan Gandhi, Prabhat Hajela, Jason Hicken, Nikhil Koratkar, Emily Liu, Assad Oberai, Zahra Sotoudeh and Daniel Walczyk.


Research Areas: Multidisciplinary design optimization; Aerodynamic shape optimization; trajectory optimization; Optimization under uncertainty; Inverse problems and model reduction

Participating faculty: Prabhat Hajela, Jason Hicken, Onkar Sahni , and Assad Oberai.


Research Areas: Spacecraft trajectory control optimization; Spacecraft relative motion optimization; Alternative ways to optimize propellant consumption relying on atmospheric differential drag; Large flexible spacecraft dynamics and control, space vehicle control.

Participating faculty: Kurt Anderson.


Research Areas: Fuel chemistry; Optical diagnostics; Solid propellants; Spray combustion; Nano-energetics; Swirl-Stabilized combustion; Transonic combustion.

Participating faculty: Matthew Oehlschlaeger, and Zvi Rusak.

Nuclear Science and Engineering

Nuclear Power Systems

Research Areas: Novel reactor design concepts; Nuclear safety / risk analysis / emergency preparedness; Nuclear thermal hydraulics; Fuel cycle (spent fuel storage, geological repository, re-processing); Fuel design and performance; Nuclear data instrumentation and detector development; Computational methods (neutronics analysis, multi-physics and multi-scale modeling); Nuclear fusion and energy policy.

Participating faculty: Steve Antal, Yaron Danon, Thomas Haley, Wei Ji, Emily Liu, Jie Lian, Michael Podowski, Bimal K. Malaviya, Sastry Sreepada, George X. Xu, and Wei Zhou.

Applied Radiation Technologies

Research Areas:Accelerator physics; Neutron, x-ray, and light scattering physics & experiments; Radiation detection and measurement; Novel radiation sources, Nuclear cross-section data measurement and analysis; Nuclear non-proliferation (monitoring of nuclear materials for nuclear security)

Participating faculty: Bob Block, Peter Caracappa, Yaron Danon, Wei Ji, Emily Liu and George X. Xu.

Radiation Protection, Medical and Industrial Uses of Radiation

Research Areas: Radiation dosimetry; Imaging and radiotherapy of cancer; Medical isotope production, Non-destructive testing (civil engineering, materials, oil exploration)

Participating faculty:Peter Caracappa, Yaron Danon, Wei Ji and George X. Xu.

Nuclear Materials

Research Areas: Radiation interaction and radiation effects; Advanced nuclear fuels and structural materials; Aging management; Materials for nuclear waste management; Nanostructured materials for nuclear applications.

Participating faculty: Jie Lian, Emily Liu, and Wei Zhou.

Cross-cutting Research Areas

Energy Science and Engineering

Brief Description: This cross-cutting research theme is centered around clear common interests in energy efficiency, energy storage, energy harvesting, and thermal controls. It builds on the strong expertise in fundamental thermal sciences and engineering across multiscales, thermal metrology, nanostructured materials, electrochemical energy storage, and microsystem fabrication technologies.

Participating faculty: Theodorian Borca-Tascuic, Diana Andra Borca-Tascuic, Jason Hicken, Michael Jensen, Wei Ji, Nikhil Koratkar, Jie Lian, Emily Liu, Assad Oberai, Matthew Oehlschlaeger, Michael Podowski, Zvi Rusak, Onkar Sahni, Mark Shephard, Richard Smith, John Tichy, and Lucy Zhang.

Materials, Materials Processing and Controls

Brief Description: MANE faculty are engaged in high impact interdisciplinary research in materials, manufacturing and controls as well as research that effectively links the
three disciplines to come up with system level solutions to important technological
problems. The research interests of the faculty includes materials for energy,
nano-materials, nano-composites, nanoscale heat transfer, thermoelectrics, nano-mechanics, fiber-reinforced composites, additive manufacturing, non-linear controls, micro-machining, spaceflight control, tribology, non-linear dynamics, nuclear materials, bio-materials, smart materials, adaptive structures and computational nano and bio mechanics.

Participating faculty: Kurt Anderson, Terry Blanchet, Diana Andra Borca-Tascuic, Theodorian Borca-Tascuic, Suvranu De, Farhan Gandhi, Jason Hicken, Nikhil Koratkar, Jie Lian, Emily Liu, Antoinette Maniatty, Sandipan Mishra, Catalin Picu, Johnson Samuel, Mark Shephard, Zahra Sotoudeh, Daniel Walczyk, John Wen

Human Health and Safety

Brief Description: This cross-cutting research theme is centered around common interests in biomechanics, virtual surgery, radiation dosimetry, medical robotics, biomechanical imaging, and nanoscience.

Participating faculty:Diana Andra Borca-Tascuic, Suvranu De, Amir Hirsa, Antoinette Maniatty, Sandipan Mishra, Emily Liu, Assad Oberai, John Tichy, George X. Xu, Lucy Zhang.

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