Faculty in the Design field of Mechanical Engineering work on problems affecting the analysis, synthesis, design, automation, fabrication, testing, evaluation, and optimization of mechanical systems.
Research activities that directly affect the undergraduate teaching program include the following: design of mechatronic devices; sport equipment and safety gear; multi-media design case studies that improve a designer’s efficiency; tribological studies of computer disk-drive and micromechanical devices; design and fabrication of composite materials; fracture analysis; design and computer control of robotic systems for manufacturing and construction environments; design of bioengineering devices for studying back pain; and the development of automated manufacturing environments.
Our students learn to develop integrated manufacturing cells and machines that contain automated material handling systems, machining, tool path planning, sensor systems, quality control, and error handling.
Our program offers an integrated set of design, materials and manufacturing courses, as well as hands-on laboratory activities, providing students with a portfolio of skills broad enough to successfully develop complex mechanical engineering systems.
Because our program spans such a broad field, students will be exposed to composite materials, micro electromechanical systems, laser machining and laser processing of materials, thin film fabrication, and tool wear. Traditional topics such as stress analysis, tribology, fracture mechanics, gear-design, transmissions, mechanics of materials, and basic manufacturing process analysis, are also thoroughly covered.
The Major Field Advisors for each research area are listed here.
Faculty with research interests that relate to Design issues include Professors Andy Dong, Sara McMains, Lisa Pruitt, and Hayden Taylor.