Faculty and students in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace carry out research in diverse areas such as smart materials, complex dynamical systems, biomimetics, nanomaterials, energy systems, fire propagation, and bio-fluid mechanics. The main research in the department in carried out through 4 laboratories: the Applied Dynamics and Optimization Laboratory, the Mechatronics Laboratory, Composite Materials and Mechanics Laboratory, and the Dynamical Systems Laboratory. The labs concentrate on research related to the development, deployment, and utilization of advanced biomimetic smart systems and materials, and electromechanical systems.
Our programs offer students diverse and multidimensional education that addresses fundamental understanding of the underlying mathematics, sciences, and engineering; design methodologies; use of modern simulation and design tools; and extensive laboratories for undergraduate and graduate instruction and research.
Our mission is to prepare students for careers in mechanical and related engineering disciplines for professional development, life-long learning, and contributions to society.
We seek to add value to our students’ career potential by placing an emphasis on (a) understanding the physical world through project, tools, and practice; and (b) providing the foundation tools for innovation, invention and entrepreneurship.
The department offers BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering. It also offers an Minor in Aerospace Engineering and an Interdisciplinary Minor in Nuclear science and Engineering.
Mechanical engineering is a dynamic and continually evolving profession and the most diverse among all engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers develop the physical systems and devices that modern society needs or wants, from automobiles to air conditioning, robots to power plants, people movers to artificial limbs and rocket engines to communications satellites.
Mechanical engineering also has a long tradition of leadership in helping to develop the natural environment by breaking new ground in such areas as resource conservation, improved efficiency of energy-consuming devices, development of codes for a safer technological environment, new energy sources and the like.
Undergraduate and graduate programs in mechanical engineering are designed primarily to develop talents in such areas as design of components, fluid and thermal systems, controls and robotic systems and computer-integrated mechanical and electromechanical systems. However, many graduating students eventually apply their training to the additional diversified fields of computer engineering, nanotechnology, software development, financial engineering, bioengineering, manufacturing, astronautics, systems engineering and corporate management and law. As students mature and realize their abilities, their professional lives may center on engineering research, government, business or education.
The history of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department can be traced to 1899 when Polytechnic established its original Mechanical Engineering Department. In 1931, it began offering its first classes in aeronautical engineering: Airplane Designs and Aerodynamics, and Airplane Structures. And in 1941 began granting master’s degrees in aerospace engineering.
The Institute offers a double-degree option in Mechanical Engineering from the Sapienza University of Rome and the Polytechnic Institute of New York University. Students complying with the degree requirements of both institutions will be granted a double degree.
The Institute offers a double-degree option in Mechanical Engineering with a concentration in Dynamic Systems and Control or Manufacturing Engineering from the Polytechnic of Bari and the Polytechnic Institute of New York University. Students complying with the degree requirements of both institutions will be granted a double degree.
Department Head: Richard S. Thorsen