The mechanical engineering department requires a total of eight course credits:seven graduate level courses and a written thesis for the master’s degree. Of these seven courses, one must be a graduate- level advanced mathematics course; five must be in the department of mechanical engineering; one may be a graduate level course in physics or in the College of Engineering.

Research Areas

Faculty preform applied, computational, experimental, and theoretical research in the following broad areas: acoustics, bioengineering, combustion, composite materials, energy systems, finite element modeling, fracture mechanics, fluid dynamics, heat transfer, materials processing, robotics, and system dynamics. Specific research interests include: computer-aided design, computer-based mechanics, computer modeling of engineering systems, and design theory and methodology; computer-aided materials testing, nano-materials, and laser-induced and environmental degradation of materials; flow-induced noise and vibration, and buff body aerodynamics; multi-phase and environmental fluid mechanics and sediment transport; automotive emission control, hybrid powertrains, internal combustion engines, alternative fuel combustion, and combustion emissions, instabilities, and processes; renewable energy systems, energy for transportation, and building energy conservation; mechanical vibrations and control systems, medical devices and medical robotics and compliant systems.


The master’s thesis is regarded as both education for the candidate and a contribution to public knowledge. This requirement of a 1.0 course credit  for the written thesis in the mechanical engineering department may be satisfied by:

  1. an exercise utilizing novel approaches to solve a practical engineering problem;
  2. an exercise designed to develop research ability and to demonstrate research performance;
  3. an experimental or theoretical research project. A final oral examination must be passed at least two weeks before the degree is to be received. The students must defend a thesis proposal prior to registration for thesis credit.

Facilities and Courses

Thesis work may be conducted in the following laboratories: hybrid powertrain laboratory, bioengineering, composite materials, compressible flow, computer-aided engineering and design, computational mechanics and fracture mechanics, materials characterization and nondestructive evaluation laboratory, heat transfer, product development, thermal-fluids-energy, robotics, and wind tunnel facilities.

Courses Offered

620.  Solar Thermal Systems (I or II; 3, 2)
Fundamental aspects of the design and operation of solar thermal systems for energy generation and fuel production.

622.  Renewable Energy Conversion (AI or AII; 3, 3)
Current energy demands, environmental effects, renewable energy resources, includes photovoltaic, thermal solar, wind, tidal, ocean thermal, wave energies; clean coal, nuclear energy, smart grid technology. Prerequisite: permission of instructor

624.  Internal Combustion Engines (I or II; 4, 0)
Description of internal combustion engines, methods of evaluating performance, the thermodynamics of combustion, engine testing, and design. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

627.  Engine Generated Emissions Control (I or II; 4, 0)
Combustion thermochemistry, availability analysis, emission formation, emissions reduction technologies, greenhouse gas reduction, emission modeling and optimization, engineering system integration for emission control. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

632.  Compressible Fluid Dynamics (I or II; 4, 0)
Compressible flow, shock wave phenomena, potential flow, two-dimensional flow, numerical methods, acoustic wave propagation. Selected laboratory exercises. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

634.  Environmental Fluid Dynamics (I or II; 3, 0)
Environmental fluid flow in lakes, rivers, oceans, and the atmosphere; contaminant transport; mixing; reaction and particle dispersion processes; applications to natural and engineering systems.

635.  Aerodynamics (I or II; 4, 0)
Two dimensional flow theory; vortex and momentum theories of finite wings; viscous flows, boundary layers and drag; high lift devices. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

645.  Engineering Acoustics and Noise Control (I or II; 4, 0)
Fundamentals of sound; instrumentation for noise measurement and analysis; sound sources; sound power; sound in enclosed areas; acoustic enclosures; muffling devices; vibration control; noise control of typical devices. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

647.  Fundamentals of Combustion (I or II; 4, 0)
The fundamentals of chemically reactive flow systems with application to jet, rocket, and other air-breathing engines and special interest paid to pollutant formation. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

652.  Advanced Dynamics (I or II; 4, 0)
Kinematics and dynamics of particles and rigid bodies. Degrees of freedom. Partial velocities. Generalized active and inertia forces. Kane's equation. Lagrange's equation. Numerical simulation of motion. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

653.  Robotics (I or II; 4, 0)
History, evolution, capabilities, and applications of robotic devices. Introduction to robot kinematics, dynamics, and control. Research into current topics in robotics. Development and implementation of robotic operations using model and industrial robots. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

654.  Vehicle Dynamics and Control (I or II; 4, 0)
Introduction to modeling of vehicles for analysis and control. Topics include tire models, handling response, stability control, suspension design, race tuning.

662.  Computer Integrated Manufacturing (I or II; 4, 0)
Issues of integrated information in manufacturing systems. In-depth study of solid modeling. Computer control of manufacturing processes, computer-aided quality control, and computer-aided process planning.

663.  Introduction to Mechatronics (I or II; 4, 0)
Mechatronics is a multidiscipline technical area defined as the synergistic integration of mechanical engineering with electronic and intelligent computer control in the design and manufacture of industrial products and processes. This design-directed course will cover topics such as actuators and drive systems, sensors, programmable controllers, microcontroller programming and interfacing, and automation systems integration. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

664.  Mechanism Design (I or II; 3, 0)
Design of traditional and compliant mechanisms. Topics include kinematics, analytical and graphical synthesis methods, and topics in research. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

666.  Applied Fracture Mechanics (I or II; 4, 0)
Fundamentals of fracture mechanics and its applications to the design of damage tolerant structures. Case studies in the fields of aerospace, pressure, vessels, rotating machinery, railroads, etc. Illustrating fracture mechanics principles in design. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

667.  Finite Element Methods (I or II; 3, 2)
Fundamental theory and applications for civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and engineering mechanics stress analysis problems. One-, two-, and three-dimensional elements, and axisymmetric elements, and their formulations; stress recovery techniques; modeling considerations; convergence criteria and error estimates, includes use of commercial and developmental finite element analysis programs. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as CENG 608.

668.  Applied Finite Element for Mechanical Design (I; 2, 3)
Practical uses of finite element software for problems common in research and mechanical design. Applications include sub-structure modeling, contact problems, stress concentrations and crack defects, elastic-plastic problems, and problems with dynamic loading. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

669.  Computer-Aided Design (I or II; 4, 0)
Fundamentals of geometric modeling and computational geometry. Topics include geometric representation of surfaces, mesh generation, and design optimization. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

670.  Engineering Composite Materials (I or II; 4, 0)
Fundamental composite mechanics, including micromechanics and laminated plate theory. Design and analysis of composite structures; composite manufacturing techniques; current research topics in composite area. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

672.  Atomic Arrangements and Defects (I or II; 4, 0)
The structure of crystalline and non-crystalline materials and the relationship between structure, defects, and mechanical properties.

674.  Bulk Metallic Glasses (I or II; 3, 2)
Thermodynamics and kinetics of metallic glasses; deformation, fatigue and fracture behavior; and metallic glass composites. Alloy design, casting, and mechanical testing.

676.  Biomechanics (I or II; 4, 0)
Principles of mechanics applied to biological systems. Background in anatomy, physiology, and cell biology will be presented. Mechanical behavior of hard and soft biological materials. Topics in cellular, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, implant, and sport/motion biomechanics. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

685.  Advanced Engineering Problems (I or II; R; 2, 3) Half to full course.
An investigation under the direction of a staff member. Topics not covered in other courses may be studied in this course. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

ENGR 695.  Advanced Topics in Engineering Mathematics (I; 4, 0)
Linear algebra and analytical/computational techniques for solving ordinary and partial differential equations relevant to engineering applications. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

697. Graduate Thesis Research (I and /or II)

699. Thesis (I and/or II)

Research on the graduate level under the direction of a faculty member. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

Courses offered occasionally
621 Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics, 623 Thermal Environmental Engineering, 630 Advanced Heat Transfer, 631 Boundary Layers and Convection Heat Transfer, 633 Advanced Fluid Mechanics, 640 Turbomachinery, 641 Gas Turbines, 646 Flow-induced Noise and Vibration, 651 Vibration Analysis, 660 Engineering Optimization, 665 Advanced Mechanics of Solids, 684 Special Topics, 690 Form and Function