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Graduate Catalog | 2005-2007
College of Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

to courses in ME Mechanical Engineering »

Master of Science in Engineering
Doctor of Philosophy


The graduate program in mechanical engineering is designed to educate engineers who will be in the forefront of the mechanical engineering profession, leading the way to new and improved engineering systems to transform energy, materials, and information to meet the needs of society. To achieve this objective, the program offers a breadth of research and study areas and facilities. The faculty values creativity, the novel application of fundamental engineering science, interdisciplinary activities, the development of future leaders and a community of scholars, professionalism, and excitement in discovery. The program is designed to enhance these values, drawing upon the diverse interests and experience of the faculty. The major areas of emphasis are described below.

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Areas of Study and Facilities

Acoustics. The Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Electrical and Computer Engineering offer an interdisciplinary course of study in this field. Research projects are carried out in physical acoustics, industrial acoustics, electroacoustics, nonlinear acoustics, underwater acoustics, and medical ultrasound. Major experimental facilities include a general-purpose acoustics laboratory, a transducers laboratory, an anechoic chamber, a reverberation chamber, waveguides for high-intensity sound, a computer-controlled water tank for ultrasonics, and extensive underwater sound facilities at the Applied Research Laboratories.

Biomechanical engineering. This concentration provides studies for application of mechanical engineering principles to biological and medical problems. Areas of study are physiology, bioheat transfer, biomaterials, biorheology, health physics, biosignal analysis, biomechanics, ultrasonics, and biomedical computing. Supporting courses and facilities are also provided through the Department of Biomedical Engineering.

Dynamic systems and control. This concentration offers intensive study in the analysis, design, and control of engineered and natural systems. Areas of study include applied mechanics, biomedical engineering, constitutive modeling of materials, electromechanics, information and control theory, mechanisms and robotics, mechatronics, modeling of multienergy domain systems, multibody dynamics, simulation and analysis of system dynamics, tribology, and vibrations. Laboratories and facilities are available for research in acoustics, biomechanics, control systems, mechatronics, robotics, system dynamics, and tribology.

Manufacturing and decision systems engineering. Manufacturing and decision systems engineering (MDSE) embraces the broad spectrum of knowledge required by decision makers in the realms of manufacturing and service systems. Courses in MDSE cover topics drawn from mechanical systems and design, thermal and fluid systems, materials science and engineering, operations research and industrial engineering, and leadership and entrepreneurship. Major research facilities are available for graduate students in this field.

Manufacturing and design. The concentration in manufacturing and design offers state-of-the-art programs in innovative manufacturing processes, product design and development, and supporting technologies. Areas of study include product design methods, layer-based manufacturing (solid freeform fabrication), machine design, unit manufacturing processes, robotics, contemporary prototyping, reverse engineering, optimization techniques, computer-aided design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM), computational geometry, machine intelligence, and design for people with disabilities. Well-equipped laboratories are available for research in solid freeform fabrication (including selective laser sintering), product modeling and simulation, unit manufacturing processes, robotics, one-off prototyping (such as CNC processes, woodworking equipment, power tools, and product measurement equipment), scaled manufacturing (from macro to meso to micro), biomedical device fabrication, and laser-based processes. These laboratories are part of the Advanced Manufacturing Center.

Materials engineering. This concentration encompasses graduate study in the fields of materials development, characterization and processing, and in structure-property-performance relationships. Areas of study include ceramics, physical metallurgy, mechanical behavior, materials processing, fuel cells, high-energy density batteries, new materials development, nanomaterials and nanotechnology, corrosion, and microelectronics packaging. Laboratory facilities include scanning and transmission electron microscopes; x-ray scattering, metallographic, laser processing, thermal analysis, and thin-film characterization facilities; and mechanical, electrical, magnetic, and electrochemical property measurement equipment. The Department of Mechanical Engineering is also a primary participant in the interdisciplinary materials science and engineering graduate degree program.

Nuclear and radiation engineering. This concentration provides graduate study and research in nuclear radiation science, analysis and design of nuclear systems, and experimental techniques in nuclear technology. Emphasis is on radiation transport and measurements, neutron physics, health physics and dosimetry, transport and disposal of nuclear wastes, and nuclear material safeguards and disposition. The Nuclear Engineering Teaching Laboratory is equipped with a 1.1-MW TRIGA pulsing nuclear reactor; a cold neutron source with prompt gamma analysis; neutron radiography equipment; neutron activation analysis equipment, including a pneumatic transfer system; californium-252 neutron sources; a low-level gamma-ray counting system and many radiation detection systems; and extensive computational capabilities.

Thermal/fluid systems. This concentration offers graduate study and research in the areas of thermodynamics, heat and mass transfer, fluid mechanics, combustion, energy conversion, energy conservation, alternative energy, microscale heat transfer, microfluidics, advanced laser-materials processing, and thermoelectrics. Experimental facilities include subsonic wind tunnels, three-dimensional laser-Doppler anemometry, a micro/nano fabrication facility, scanning probe microscopy, a cryogenic measurement facility, instrumentation calibration facilities for semiconductor rapid thermal processing, fundamental combustion research facilities, engine and emission test facilities, solar energy components and systems, and various fluid mechanics and heat transfer equipment. The University's computation resources for numerical investigations are state-of-the-art and extensive.

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Graduate Studies Committee

The following faculty members served on the Graduate Studies Committee in the spring semester 2004-2005.

Chandrajit L. Bajaj
Jonathan F. Bard
J. Wesley Barnes
Ronald E. Barr
Joseph J. Beaman Jr.
Anthony Bedford
Adela Ben-Yakar
Steven Biegalski
David G. Bogard
David L. Bourell
Michael D. Bryant
Matthew I. Campbell
Shaochen Chen
Melba M. Crawford
Michael E. Crawford
Richard H. Crawford
Kenneth R. Diller
Janet L. Ellzey
Stas Emelianov
Ofodike A. Ezekoye
Eric P. Fahrenthold
Benito Fernandez
Paulo Ferreira
John B. Goodenough
Matthew J. Hall
Mark F. Hamilton
John J. Hasenbein
Paul S. Ho
John R. Howell
Dale E. Klein
Billy V. Koen
Desiderio Kovar
Erhan Kutanoglu
Sheldon Landsberger
Raul G. Longoria
Arumugam Manthiram
Glenn Y. Masada
Ronald D. Matthews
Tessie J. Moon
David P. Morton
Robert D. Moser
Richard Neptune
Steven P. Nichols
Marcus G. Pandy
Ronald L. Panton
John A. Pearce
Elmira Popova
Llewellyn K. Rabenberg
Kenneth M. Ralls
Juan M. Sanchez
Philip S. Schmidt
Carolyn C. Seepersad
Li Shi
S. V. Sreenivasan
Eric M. Taleff
Delbert Tesar
Gary C. Vliet
Harovel G. Wheat
Preston S. Wilson
Kristin L. Wood
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Admission Requirements

To enter the graduate program in mechanical engineering, a student should have an undergraduate degree in engineering or in an equivalent quantitative field of study. Students who do not meet this requirement may have to take additional courses at the discretion of the graduate adviser.

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Degree Requirements

Master of Science in Engineering. Students generally follow the thesis option, which requires thirty semester hours of credit, including six hours in the thesis course. Students who are appointed as teaching assistants or research assistants are expected to choose the thesis option. Except for students in manufacturing and decision systems engineering (MDSE), the report option requires thirty-three semester hours, including three hours in the report course; the MDSE concentration requires thirty-six hours, including three in the report course. The option without thesis or report requires thirty-six hours of coursework. At least eighteen hours (including the thesis or report, if any) should be in the major area; at least six hours should be in a supporting area. The supporting courses may be in mechanical engineering but must represent a specialty distinct from the major courses. Some areas of study have required core courses.

Doctor of Philosophy. The student must pass oral and written qualifying examinations administered by faculty members in the area of specialty. After passing the qualifying examinations, the student applies for candidacy by submitting a Program of Work that includes a proposed dissertation topic and a suggested dissertation committee. The dissertation committee recommends courses to be taken as part of the Program of Work, which should include at least eighteen hours (for students with a master's degree) or forty-eight hours (for students without a master's degree) of graduate coursework in the area of specialization. This coursework must be taken on the letter-grade basis. The Program of Work must be approved by the chair of the Graduate Studies Committee. Application for candidacy must be submitted before the student completes fifty hours of credit toward the doctoral degree.

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Dual Degree Program

Master of Science in Engineering/Master of Business Administration

The objective of this dual degree program is to offer an opportunity for a well-rounded professional education in the design and management of manufacturing technology. For the manufacturing engineer, this program offers the opportunity to understand the labor and management issues in the design of the manufacturing complex. For the manager of manufacturing, it offers the opportunity to develop an appreciation of world-class manufacturing technology.

A student must complete a total of at least seventy-two semester hours, including a report in the College of Engineering. The curriculum includes design for manufacturing, manufacturing automation and assembly, advanced electronics packaging, integrated circuits, production and logistics management, and advanced materials manufacturing.

A student interested in the dual degree program should apply through the Graduate and International Admissions Center. He or she must be accepted by each individual program in order to be admitted to the dual program. Like all other graduate applicants, the student is responsible for submitting any additional information required by the Graduate Studies Committee for each program.

Upon admission to the dual degree program, the student must pay a nonrefundable enrollment deposit to indicate that he or she accepts the offer of admission. The deposit serves to confirm the student's intention of enrolling in both programs and is applied to the payment of fees when the student enrolls. Students who demonstrate financial need may qualify for assistance to cover the deposit.

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For More Information

Campus address: Engineering Teaching Center (ETC) 5.204, phone (512) 232-2701, fax (512) 471-8727; campus mail code: C2200

Mailing address: The University of Texas at Austin, Graduate Program, Department of Mechanical Engineering, 1 University Station C2200, Austin TX 78712



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Graduate Catalog | 2005-2007 Mechanical Engineering program | courses

Fields of Study

    Office of the Registrar     University of Texas at Austin copyright 2005
    Official Publications 16 Aug 2005