Research in Mechanical Engineering
The University of Wisconsin-Madison encourages faculty members to work together on common research problems in cooperative research programs. Faculty members work together securing outside funds for research projects, advising graduate students, reporting on their work to the profession, and developing courses and textbooks based on their activities. Several such programs in the Department of Mechanical Engineering have received worldwide acclaim.
Faculty Research Areas
Control of Manufacturing: Michael Zinn
Laser-Based Manufacturing: Frank Pfefferkorn
Controls: Michael Zinn
Nano and micromechanics: Tom Krupenkin
Solar Energy: Gregory Nellis
Two-Phase Flow Heat Transfer: Mario Trujillo
BADGER: Biomechanics, Assistive Devices, Gait Engineering and Rehabilitation Laboratory aims to enhance physical and functional recovery from orthopedic and neurological injury through advanced robotic devices.
BIONATES: Bio-Nanocomposites for Tissue Engineering Scaffolds: tissue scaffolds and pathways that help restore, maintain, or improve the function of diseased or damaged human tissues
Bone and Joint Biomechanics Lab: design of biomechanical and safe solutions for the prevention, treatment and care of diseased or injured systems
Cardiovascular Fluid Dynamics Lab: develop, implement and validate non-invasive flow analysis methodologies to assess cardiovascular flow dynamics, using a combination of imaging, simulations and patient‑specific physical models
Henak Lab: focuses on the connection between microscale soft tissue damage and joint disease, with the goal of improving the understanding of orthopedic diseases and efficacy of treatment.
Neuromuscular BIomechanics Lab: investigates the scientific basis and clinical treatment of mobility impairments due to soft tissue injury, aging, osteoarthritis and neurological disorders
UW Center for Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology: engages in engineering research, design, and education that will enhance independence and mobility in individuals
Affiliate ME Faculty Labs
UW Neuromuscular Coordination Laboratory conducts fundamental research on the interactions between mechanics, neural control, and muscular coordination that allow humans and other animals to navigate their environments.
Vascular Tissue Biomechanics Laboratory has the goal of improving cardiovascular health through the integration of mechanical engineering, vascular biology and imaging tools, to advance knowledge in these fields, and to educate the next generation of leaders in cardiovascular engineering and science.
Simulation-Based Engineering Lab. The lab’s goal is to investigate and develop high-performance computational tools to simulate dynamic systems, with applications in vehicle dynamics, machine/ground interaction, fluid-solid interaction, granular dynamics and biomechanics.
Engineering Representations and Simulation Laboratory focuses on the design and analysis of multi-scale and multi-disciplinary engineering systems using approaches from Geometric Modeling, CAD/CAE, Computational Mechanics, Dimensional Reduction, Shape and Topology Optimization, GPU Computing.
Spatial Automation Lab focuses on spatial and physical modeling in support of industrial automation so that physical artifacts can be represented, analyzed, designed, and manufactured based on computer representations and algorithms.
Computational Design & Manufacturing Lab conducts fundamental research in computer methods for design and manufacturing automation, with technical emphasis on geometric computing, and shape/topology optimization.
Data-Driven Scientific Computing The lab focuses on research at the intersection of data methods, machine learning, and scientific computing. The aim is to develop, analyze, and implement methods that combine data and theory-based first-principles models to gain deeper insights into physical, biological, and general complex systems than with techniques that rely on either data or theory-based models alone. Keywords are model reduction, uncertainty quantification, Bayesian inference, computational statistics, data-driven modeling, and high-dimensional approximation.
Engine Research Center includes seven faculty members who investigate the thermal, chemical, and fluid aspects of internal combustion engines. The Center has been in existence since 1946 and is recognized as one of the world’s premier engine combustion facilities.
The Solar Energy Lab is the oldest of its kind in the world. Faculty in the SEL investigate research problems in both solar and conventional energy utilization. These faculty also have expertise in refrigeration and cryogenics.
The Cryogenics Lab at the UW-Madison is recognized as one of the strongest centers for research into low temperature refrigeration (from 0.1 K to 150 K) in the world.
Multiphase Computational Fluid Dynamics group investigates a variety of multiphase flow problems ranging micron-size particles transported in analytical flow fields to various industrial liquid spray applications
Laser-Assisted Manufacturing Lab conducts basic and applied research on discrete metal part manufacturing processes including micro-mechanical machining (e.g., micro end milling), laser polishing, friction stir welding, active addition and removal of heat from manufacturing processes (e.g., cryogenic machine), and resource efficiency of manufacturing processes.
Polymer Engineering Center has six faculty members (Osswald, Turng, Rudolph, Gramann, Ploeg, Rowlands, and Pfefferkorn) ranging from traditional plastics and polymeric/metal composites to bio-based polymers, composites, and smart materials; additive manufacturing; from conventional to emerging and innovative processes, from geometric modeling and prototyping to process control and automation; from nanofilm and nanocomposites to microcellular plastics; and from advanced modeling and simulation to Internet and Web-based tools for design and manufacturing
New Manufacturing Paradigm: Manufacturing for Design (MFD), Ultra-precision machining technology, Manufacturing energy efficiency and strategy, Appropriate technology, Burr minimization and prevention, Digital manufacturing and smart manufacturing, Hybrid manufacturing.
Robotics and Intelligent Systems Lab: development of novel electromechanical and robotic medical devices and systems with a focus on minimally invasive therapeutic procedures
Tribology and Nonlinear Dynamics Lab: studies mechanical interactions occurring at the interfaces among materials, biological tissues and surrounding environment.
Krupenkin Lab focuses on using microfluidics to enable high-power mechanical energy harvesting
Computational Mechanics Center develops analytical and computational models to simulate thin-film growth and multi-layered, thin-film structures
Computational Mechanics and Multiphysics Group focuses on modeling the mechanics and multiphysics behind complex microstructural/morphological phenomena in materials (structural, functional and biological).
Affiliate ME Faculty Labs
Structural Dynamics Research Group is focused on experimentally probing and analytically predicting the dynamic motion of structures
Research Centers and Consortia
The Engine Research Center includes five faculty members who investigate the thermal, chemical, and fluid aspects of internal combustion engines. The Center has been in existence since 1946 and is recognized as one of the world’s premier engine combustion facilities.
The Polymer Engineering Center can trace its activities back to 1946 when Professor Ronald Daggett first included plastics in the mechanical engineering curriculum. Daggett not only taught the first plastics course in engineering worldwide, but he also created the first plastics research group. The current faculty members (Osswald, Turng, and Pfefferkorn) have a wide variety of expertise and research interests. These range from traditional plastics and polymeric/metal composites to bio-based polymers, composites, and smart materials; additive manufacturing; from conventional to emerging and innovative processes, from geometric modeling and prototyping to process control and automation; from nanofilm and nanocomposites to microcellular plastics; and from advanced modeling and simulation to Internet and Web-based tools for design and manufacturing.
The Wisconsin Applied Computing Center was established due to the co-founders’ shared belief that modeling, simulation, and visualization are poised to become prevalent in solving hard problems and fostering innovation in Engineering. The mission of the center is twofold: (i) discover and share new ways in which computer modeling, simulation, and visualization can foster innovation and scientific discover; and (ii) combine cutting edge research and education in applied computing with a strong outreach effort.
- Dan Negrut, Director
- Xiaoping Qian
- Eftychios Sifakis
- Vadim Shapiro
- Krishnan Suresh
- Darryl Thelen
- Mario Trujillo
The Solar Energy Lab is the oldest of its kind in the world. Faculty in the SEL investigate research problems in both solar and conventional energy utilization. These faculty also have expertise in refrigeration and cryogenics. The Cryogenics Lab at the UW-Madison is recognized as one of the strongest centers for research into low temperature refrigeration (from 0.1 K to 150 K) in the world.
WEMPEC is an internationally renowned power electronics research and electric machines research group located at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. With the support of our 80+ corporate sponsors, our team of professors, graduate students, and international scholars work together to research and develop the newest technologies and techniques in electric machines, power electronics, actuators, sensors, drives, motion control, and drive applications.