Department Chair's Message

Mechanical engineering is among the most diversified of the traditional engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design and build machines and devices that enable humans to live and work in space, in the air, on the ground, and under water. Their machines can extend our physical capabilities, improve our health and standard of living, and impact the environment in which we live.

Naturally, much of what engineers can or cannot do depends on the materials they have available to tackle their tasks. This is why engineers and material scientists work closely together with the goal of tailoring not only the mechanical, but also chemical and electrical properties of materials to make new applications possible.

Mechanical engineering students acquire an understanding of the fundamentals of mechanics and of the thermal energy sciences. They learn to perform interactive design tasks using computers and to select the most appropriate materials for a specific application. They also become familiar with the chemical and electrical sciences, which are often essential to the total design and realization of a mechanical system. And they also learn to keep the ecosystem in mind when designing solutions to technical problems.

At the graduate level, our activity focuses on a fundamental understanding of mechanical engineering and materials science problems. Courses are offered in four different tracks: Fluids and thermal sciences, soft matter & complex fluids, materials science, and robotics & mechatronics

We have a small but extremely active group of faculty, researchers, graduate students, and undergraduates who share a passion for a range of topics in mechanical engineering and materials science. We hope that the information presented here will answer your questions about our programs as well as pique your interest in the activities of modern mechanical engineers and materials scientists.

Udo D. Schwarz
Department of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science