Materials Science & Mechanical Engineering

Materials Science and Mechanical Engineering at Harvard School of Engineering ranges from fundamental work in solid and fluid mechanics to diverse studies in materials, mechanical systems, and biomechanics. Characterizing the performance of such systems often depends on understanding behavior at several scales, requiring, for example, the mechanics of dislocations and other imperfections, grain boundaries, interfaces, and material heterogeneity.

Materials scientists and mechanical engineers at Harvard are pursuing work in the mechanics of materials structures; geophysical and biological systems involved in phenomena such as elasticity, plasticity, buckling, fracture, and wave motion; biological control, or the self-organizing behavior of living systems, in particular the brain, to develop novel control strategies and biologically-inspired machines; and biomedical instrumentation, teleoperated robots, and intelligent sensors.

Mechanical engineering covers a wide range of activities, including research in dynamics, fluids, materials, solids, and thermodynamics. Research is strongly interdisciplinary, with many connections to Applied Mathematics, Applied Physics, Earth and Planetary Sciences, and Chemistry and Chemical Biology.