Carnegie Mellon University

PhD - Mechanics, Chemistry, and Materials (MCM)

The Mechanics, Chemistry, and Materials (MCM) PhD program is at the forefront of interdisciplinary exploration within civil and environmental engineering. Our world-class researchers specialize in the mechanics, chemistry, and materials aspects of this field, delving into the intricacies of classical and quantum mechanics to tackle challenges head-on.

These challenges are met with a multifaceted approach that includes the development of innovative modeling techniques, meticulous bench experiments, and rigorous fieldwork. These endeavors collectively yield a deeper comprehension of material behaviors, enabling their optimization for diverse applications. A significant outcome of our research is understanding material behavior and its optimal utilization for various applications. Our researchers thoroughly explore the complexities of material interactions and transformations, acquiring insights that lead to improved material design and performance. These advancements bear great significance in addressing pressing challenges such as sustainability and equity in environmental practices.

Our Mechanics, Chemistry, and Materials PhD program will train you to develop comprehensive insights into material behavior and its optimization, preparing you to contribute significantly to the advancement of civil and environmental engineering while addressing the critical issues of our times.

PhD Research

Li Discusses Role of Fin Structures in Heat Transfer

li.pngYuanhao Li, a PhD candidate, and Assistant Professor Gerald Wang are investigating how nanoscale fins (nanofins) impact heat transfer at material interfaces. Li's research reveals that nanofins induce unique fluid structuring and diffusion effects at this scale, with potential applications in nanoscale energy storage and thermoelectric devices. Li credits his success to Professor Wang's mentorship and interdisciplinary coursework.

Babaei Identifies Lipid Rafts as Way COVID-19 Invades Cells

babaei.pngMahnoush Babaei researched how viruses like COVID-19 exploit lipid rafts to infiltrate cells. Their study, "Mechanobiology predicts raft formations triggered by ligand-receptor activity across the cell membrane," reveals how viruses activate receptors on cell membranes, bypassing defenses. This research may aid in developing strategies to prevent infections like COVID-19.

Dive into Research

lowry-1.pngCEE Professor Greg Lowry and Postdoc Astrid Avellan describe their work looking at how nanomaterials behave in very complex environments using mesocosms that represent freshwater, and emergent wetlands. They studied the behavior of gold nanoparticles in the mesocosms and discovered that gold was not inert, as they expected, but instead was transformed quite a bit by organisms in the environment.

MCM Faculty