Research

Duke's research in mechanical engineering and materials science addresses fundamental and applied engineering problems in the areas noted below. We are particularly strong in unsteady aerodynamics, controls, and thermodynamics, as well as biological and electronic materials and interfaces. Our faculty maintain strong connections with industry, and lead multi-university research efforts--providing ample opportunities for graduate students to pursue research at the forefront of their field, and develop career-relevant experience. A defining characteristic of our research is an interdisciplinary approach that leverages the strengths of Duke's many departments and schools as a top research institution.

Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Research at Duke

Opportunities for Graduate Study

Doctoral and Master of Science study in mechanical engineering and materials science at Duke is highly interdisciplinary, drawing on a broad slate of faculty from across the Pratt School of Engineering. Students have considerable flexibility in crafting a graduate program that suits individual interests, with core courses that reflect faculty research strengths.

The department also offers a program of study towards the Masters of Engineering (M.Eng) in either mechanical engineering or materials science. This 30-credit degree program includes course work towards departmental requirements, an area of specialization, business and management fundamentals, and an internship or applied research experience.

January 25, 2016
Earl Dowell, the William Holland Hall Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Duke University, has been named this year’s recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Reed Aeronautics Award. The award is the highest honor an individual can receive for notable...
December 07, 2015
Duke researchers have devised a way to take an in-depth look at a poorly understood phenomenon that commonly occurs in medical procedures using therapeutic ultrasound, such as shattering kidney stones, delivering drugs to cells, and, most recently, breaking the blood-brain barrier.
October 22, 2015
Olivier Delaire, a scientist probing the atomic phenomena underlying the physical characteristics of materials, will join Duke University’s faculty in January 2016. After seven years at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the Tennessee-based research campus of the U.S. Department of Energy,...
September 29, 2015
Researchers at Duke University and North Carolina State University have discovered a brand-new class of materials. When students learn about molecular structures, they’re shown crystals like salt, which resembles a 3-D checkerboard. Historically, most non-metal materials that scientists develop and...
August 27, 2015
Materials melt faster when the lines of heat spread through the cold material like the branches of a tree -- and the melting rate can be steadily increased by allowing the tree architecture to freely evolve over time, researchers have discovered.
August 17, 2015
We’ve all seen dewdrops form on spider webs. But what if they flung themselves off of the strands instead? Researchers at Duke University and the University of British Columbia have now observed this peculiar phenomenon, which could benefit many industrial applications. As long as the strands are...