What Is Materials Engineering?
Materials engineering works with materials at all levels, down to molecular and atomic and is important in the study of system failures. Materials engineering is fast becoming an important part of nanotechnology. Schools offering Engineering & Technology Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Materials engineering is involved with the properties of matter and the application of those processes to science and engineering. During its early years, materials engineering was concerned with metal alloys, ceramics, polymers and exotic materials. In recent years, materials engineering has been involved with nanoscience and nanotechnology. Materials engineering is also an important part of forensic engineering and failure analysis.
Engineering New Materials
According to Purdue University, materials engineering is responsible for high-performance materials. New materials developed by materials engineers lead to new technologies in civil, chemical, construction, nuclear, aeronautical, agricultural, mechanical, biomedical and electrical engineering.
Materials engineering studies the properties of a material in regards to its structure at all levels, down to individual atoms and the atomic structure. With this knowledge, a materials engineer knows how the material will be affected by the processing of the material. This can include bending, twisting, shaping and machining.
According to Britannica Concise Encyclopedia, materials engineering is directly related to materials science. Materials science grew out of solid state physics, metallurgy, ceramics and chemistry. This makes materials engineering important to fields such as:
- Information processing
- Nuclear power
- Energy conversion
Materials engineering isn't just developing new nanoparticles and polymers. Materials engineering has applications that benefit everyday life:
- Analyzing product failure data and developing solutions
- Monitoring material performance in evaluating material deterioration
- Designing and directing the testing of processing procedure
- Evaluating technical specifications and economic factors
- Problem-solving in mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, electrical engineering and civil engineering.
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