Mechanical Behavior of Materials

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Course Date: 03 September 2014 to 17 December 2014 (15 weeks)

Price: free

Course Summary

Why do materials deform and break? How does nature engineer materials to be light yet stiff and strong? Find out in 3.032x!

Course Instructors

Lorna J. Gibson

Professor Lorna Gibson graduated in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto and obtained her Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge. She was an Assistant Professor in Civil Engineering at the University of British Columbia for two years before moving to MIT where she is currently the Matoula S. Salapatas Professor of Materials Science and Engineering. Her research interests focus on the mechanics of materials with a cellular structure such as engineering honeycombs and foams, natural materials such as wood, palm and bamboo and medical materials such as trabecular bone and tissue engineering scaffolds. She is the co-author of Cellular Solids: Structure and Properties (with MF Ashby) and of Cellular Materials in Nature and Medicine (with MF Ashby and BA Harley). Recent projects include aerogels for thermal insulation; nanofibrillar cellulose foams; and the mechanics of plant materials. At MIT, she has served as Chair of the Faculty and Associate Provost.

Simona Socrate

Simona Socrate is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and a Principal Research Scientist at MIT/ISN. She earned a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from the University of Rome, and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from MIT. She has been teaching classes in structural mechanics at MIT for over ten years. Her research efforts focus on the mechanical behavior of fabrics, composites, and soft biological tissue. Her areas of interest include measuring and modeling the high strain rate properties of biological tissue to prevent injuries, and investigating the mechanics of pregnancy to reduce the risk of pre-term delivery.

Course Description

This subject provides an introduction to the mechanical behavior of materials, from both the continuum and atomistic points of view. At the continuum level, we learn how forces and displacements translate into stress and strain distributions within the material. At the atomistic level, we learn the mechanisms that control the mechanical properties of materials. We will consider: linear elasticity (recoverable deformation at small displacements), viscoelasticity (behavior intermediate to that of an elastic solid and that of a viscous fluid), plasticity (permanent deformation), creep in crystalline materials (time dependent behavior), brittle fracture (rapid crack propagation) and fatigue (failure due to repeated loading of a material). Examples are drawn from metals, ceramics, glasses, polymers, biomaterials, composites and cellular materials.

Course Prerequisites

Classical mechanics (or statics) and chemistry at the first year university level; differential equations.

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