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College of Engineering and Computing

Advanced Materials

Faculty in the College of Engineering and Computing are engaged in important materials research in the areas of composites, aerospace engineering, manufacturing processes, complex system molding and much more.

The interdisciplinary research taking place at the University of South Carolina is discoveries that are a driving force behind advancement in many South Carolina industries.

Advanced Composite Assembly Laboratory

Dr. Michel van Tooren,

The research in this lab focuses on novel assembly technology for composites. The lab is equipped with a range of welding and bonding technologies for composites including induction welding, ultrasonic welding, and friction stir welding. Faculty members work closely with industry and also research thermoplastic polymer composites and hybrid polymer composites. Both continuous and short fiber reinforced polymers are studied.


Advanced Composite Parts Manufacturing Laboratory

Dr. Michel van Tooren,

The research in this lab focuses on manufacturing technology for the next generation of composite aircraft parts. The lab is equipped with an industrial fiber placement machine, two robots, autoclave, and a vacuum assisted resin transfer molding (VARTM) machine. Through partnerships with original equipment manufactures (OEM), novel fiber placement and evaluation technology will be developed and prototyped. Also, this lab is an academic environment where industry, faculty and students work together to discover more efficient and cost effective production technology and where new materials and their preforms can be tried in a controlled environment.


Laboratory for Active Materials and Smart Structures

Dr. Victor Giurtiugiu,

The research focus of LAMSS is developing innovativesensor and enabling technologies for nondestructive evaluation (NDE) and structural health monitoring (SHM) of aerospace, mechanical, infrastructure, and civil structures.

LAMSS conducts research in the

  • multidisciplinary fields of piezoelectric wafer active sensors (PWAS)
  • fiber Bragg grating sensors (FBG) scanning laser Doppler vibrometry (SLDV)
  • smart adaptive and multi-functional material
  • emerging nano-sensors
  • energy harvesting
  • mechatronics

The long-term goal is to achieve the integration of mechanical, electronics and information technology into smart active “skins” and “coating” that will provide on-demand bulletins of structural health and predicted future performance. LAMSS teams up with government and industrialpartners to provide state-of-the-art solutions that will meet the requirement of military and civilian applications.


Center for Mechanics, Materials and Non-Destructive Evaluation

Dr. Michael Sutton,

Dr. Bill Y.J. Chao,

The center’s research projects span a spectrum from basic science to industry applications.

Areas of expertise include

  • material characterization at the macro and nano-scale
  • dynamic andstatic mechanical testing
  • structural analysis
  • non-contacting strain measurement methods
  • advanced numerical simulations
  •  fracture mechanics


Virtual Test Bed

Dr. Roger Dougal,

The VTB comprises a suite of software tools for the prototyping of large-scale, multi-disciplined dynamic systems, allowing testing of new designs prior to hardware construction. The applications driving development of the software primarily relate to advanced power systems such as those for “more electric” implementations of land, air and sea vehicles, or those for Smart Grid in fixed terrestrial systems.


Condition-Based Maintenance Research Center (CBM)

Dr. Abdel Bayoumi,

The CBM tests the performance of components, subsystems and systems of the U.S. Army Apache, Blackhawk and Chinook helicopters through measurements of vibration, speed, load, acoustic emission and temperature to develop predictive and proactive maintenance of aircrafts. Additionally, the CBM generates value engineering and cost benefit analysis models for the Army-CBM program.


Lightning Response Laboratory

Dr. Ken Reifsnider,
Dr. Prasun K. Majumdar,

The Lightning Response Lab refines understanding of how modern aircraft and other structures are affected by electrical storms. This is one of only two lightning strike facilities among all U.S. universities.


Center for Friction Stir Processing

Dr. Tony Reynolds,

The center is a multi-university, NSF Industry & University Cooperative Research (I/UCRC) Program focused on research and development in the area of friction based materials processing technologies and science. At the University of South Carolina, research is focused primarily on light metals for transportation applications.


Integrated Material Assessment and Predictive Simulation Laboratory (iMAPS)

Dr. Sourav Banerjee,

iMAPS researchers study the interaction of acoustics and ultrasonic waves with engineering and biological materials. The lab’s focus is understanding the "Acoustics & Ultrasonic Wave Propagation" in linear & nonlinear elastic, viscoelastic solids and fluent media at multiple length and time scales.


Dynamic Behavior and Multifunctional Materials Laboratory

Dr. Addis Kidane,

The research of this lab will focus on understanding the dynamic behavior of engineering materials, such as functionally graded materials, polymer composites, ceramic/metal composites and nanocomposites under different loading and temperature conditions.

The lab is equipped with state-of-the-art, high strain rate apparatus including    

  • a tension Kolsky bar
  • a compression Kolsky bar
  • a torsion Kolsky bar
  • and a shocktube for high rate pressure loading of structural components

 The lab also uses a range of high-speed cameras and digital image correlation systems.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.