9: School of Graduate Engineering and Applied Science

General Information | Degree Programs | Program Descriptions | Course Descriptions | Faculty

Programs in Applied Mathematics | Department of Biomedical Engineering
Department of Chemical Engineering | Department of Civil Engineering
Department of Computer Science | Department of Electrical Engineering
Engineering Physics Program | Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering | Department of Systems Engineering

Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering

The department offers graduate programs in mechanical and aerospace engineering, and nuclear engineering. About 75 full-time graduate students are currently enrolled in the department, with approximately 45 percent pursuing the Ph.D. There are approximately 90 part-time graduate students in the department.

Financial assistance to qualified mechanical, aerospace, and nuclear engineering graduate students is available in several forms. Graduate research assistantships are available for work on specific sponsored research programs. In addition, a number of graduate engineering fellowships and teaching assistantships are sponsored by the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Research and teaching assistantships may be supplemented by department or school fellowship awards.

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering   A combined graduate program in mechanical and aerospace engineering offers degrees of Master of Science, Master of Engineering and Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

Graduate students in this degree program may specialize in the following areas: fluid mechanics, thermal systems, dynamics and vibrations, structural mechanics, computer-aided engineering, machine design, manufacturing, control systems, and mathematical-computational modeling and virtual prototyping. A large selection of courses is offered covering the above areas. These courses deal with fundamental principles, analytical methods, computational techniques, and practical applications.

Research in the fluid mechanics and thermal systems areas includes studies of turbomachinery flows, low speed aerodynamic flows, atmospheric re-entry flows, supersonic mixing and combustor flows, flows in liquid centrifuges, flow in centrifugal pumps, bio-fluid mechanics, hydrodynamic stability, hydro/aeroacoustics, vortex breakdown, microgravity fluid mechanics, as well as free and forced convection.

Research in the dynamics, vibrations, and controls areas includes studies applied to rotating machinery, hydrodynamic and magnetic bearings, helicopters, spacecraft, very large structures in space, automobile crashworthiness, automobile safety, and shock isolation. Research in transportation safety of the disabled includes wheelchair restraints in buses and vans, air bag interaction, and vehicle structural modifications. Research in injury biomechanics with respect to automobiles and aircraft includes injury prevention and epidemiology studies.

Research in the area of computer-aided engineering includes investigations of integrative techniques for industrial automation, modeling and simulation of manufacturing processes, computer-aided design optimization with regard to robotics, and heat treating processes.

Research in structural mechanics includes automotive crash behavior and aerospace thermal structure problems.

Research in mathematical-computational modeling and virtual prototyping includes formulating mathematical models and simulating on the computer the behavior and performance of equipment, machinery, and systems toward more efficient identification of design parameters, improved performance of existing technology, and determination of new, commercially feasible prototypes.

Research in each of these areas encompasses experimental, analytical, and computational aspects.

Facilities within the department for research in mechanical and aerospace include a rotating machinery and controls industrial laboratory; a turbomachinery flows laboratory; a rehabilitation engineering laboratory; a subsonic wind tunnel laboratory; a supersonic combustion laboratory; a supersonic wind tunnel laboratory; a structural dynamics laboratory, including an auto crash worthiness laboratory; a thermal structures laboratory, and laboratories within the Center for Computer-Aided Engineering. Some of these laboratories are unique among all universities in the world.

Manufacturing Systems   There is also a departmental program of study which emphasizes computer integration of manufacturing processes in the following areas: (1) modeling and simulation of manufacturing systems, (2) manufacturing processes and materials, and (3) management of manufacturing. This program in manufacturing systems engineering results in a Master of Engineering degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering with a certificate indicating specialization in manufacturing systems engineering.

The Master of Engineering degree associated with the manufacturing program requires 30 credits and may be completed in one calendar year. There is a required project (which may be from industry) but no thesis. The course work includes core courses, technical electives, and a management course. Elective courses may be selected from any of the graduate departments of the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Management courses may be taken through the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration or the systems engineering department.

Nuclear Engineering   The graduate program in nuclear engineering offers the degrees of Master of Science, Master of Engineering, and Doctor of Philosophy in Nuclear Engineering.

This program offers graduate education and research opportunities in areas of engineering related to the use of nuclear energy, including reactor physics, radiation transport, radiation dosimetry, reactor safety, fluid dynamics, heat transfer, and materials.

Recent research topics have been in the areas of neutron radiography and tomography; neutron activation analysis; reactor physics; neutron transport; mathematical and computational fluid mechanics; space and fusion plasma physics; nonlinear dynamics and chaos, boron neutron capture therapy; radiation and thermal aging of polymers and electric cable; radiation-enhanced corrosion; bacterial processes for waste-volume reduction; chemical breakdown of chelating agents used for cleaning steam generators; radiation shielding and dosimetry; the use of radioisotopic tracers for corrosion gaging; and nuclear medicine.

Although some courses are considered essential for all nuclear engineering students, enough electives exist to permit each student to specialize in his or her field of interest. Most students take the standard option in nuclear engineering which stresses courses in radiation, and the design, operation and safety of current and advanced nuclear reactors.

Students may also choose one of three other options in nuclear engineering: (1) radiation protection and health physics, (2) corrosion, and (3) waste management. In addition to nuclear engineering courses, the radiation protection option offers courses in biomedical engineering and nuclear medicine. The corrosion option offers the two corrosion courses in materials science. The waste management option offers courses in environmental topics such as hydrology from the Departments of Civil Engineering and Environmental Sciences.

Students participate in an active student chapter of the American Nuclear Society at the University.

Continue to: Department of Systems Engineering
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