Centers and Labs
Fluid Dynamics Research CenterThe Fluid Dynamics Research Center, directed by Professor David Williams, has earned national and international recognition. In 1986, the Department of Defense designated it a National Center of Excellence. It is the site of the National Diagnostic Facility, a state-of-the-art wind tunnel that is unique in its combination of speed, length, and flow quality. Research carried out by the fluid dynamics faculty addresses a number of areas including fluid instabilities and transition to turbulence, unsteady separated flows, jet engine acoustics, fluid/structure interactions, and turbulent boundary layers.
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Thermal Processing Technology CenterThe Thermal Processing Technology Center focuses on thermal processing of metallic materials. In conjunction with IITRI's unique heat treatment facility, the Center combines the strength of the MMAE faculty in material processing, metallurgy, and process control with IIT's well equipped laboratories. The Thermal Processing Technology Center provides a mechanism whereby high-quality basic and applied research of interest to industry is performed cost-effectively.
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Advanced Thermal and Environmental Systems Research LaboratoryAdvanced Thermal and Environmental Systems Research Laboratory (ATESR Lab) investigates fundamental transport phenomena (primarily mass and energy transport) to improve a variety of engineered processes and reduce their impact on the environment. In particular, active projects in the lab focus on transport phenomena occurring within two-phase dispersions such as aerosols and sprays. ATESR lab values and encourages innovation and environmental conservation, with the intent of developing patentable processes that are both environmentally friendly and cost-effective.
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Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing LabThe Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing Lab has been established since 2004 in the Department of Mechanical, Materials and Aerospace Engineering at Illinois Institute of Technology. The primary mission of this laboratory is to advance the state-of-the-art technology in object modeling and CAD/CAM for emerging applications. Current research activities focus on CAD representations and tools development for additive manufacturing and advanced coordinate metrology. The lab conducts fundamental research in computer representations and modeling of 3D objects in the context of designing and manufacturing various macro- and micro- products. The research work builds on the foundations in geometric modeling, solid modeling, computational geometry, computer-aided design, computer-aided manufacturing, and solid freeform fabrication.
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Dynamic Testing LabThe Dynamic Testing Lab (DTL) has been recently established with high-speed diagnostic and data acquisition systems for high-strain-rate constitutive testing and impact failure characterization of materials. The new DTL complements existing servo-hydraulic, drop tower and high temperature testing facilities in the MMAE department's solid mechanics labs and provide the capability to investigate mechanical response of solids in a wide range of strain rates (from 10-4 to 104 s-1) and temperatures (up to 1200 oF), and under both uniaxial and multiaxial loading conditions.
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Heat Transfer Enhancement and Two Phase Flow LabThis laboratory investigates, experimentally and theoretically, the enhancement of heat transfer and mass transport in single-phase and two-phase (liquid/vapor) flows, in macro and micro scales. Most of the Thermal Sciences faculty research activities in this laboratory deal with the interactions of electrical fields and flow fields (Electrohydrodynamics).
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Navigation and Guidance LabThe MMAE Navigation and Guidance Lab (NGL) was established in 1999 by MMAE Professor Boris Pervan as a center for research, development and testing of advanced navigation, guidance, and control systems. Major areas of current research activity in this lab focus on satellite-based navigation systems, including the Global Positioning System (GPS) and Differential GPS (DGPS), high-integrity navigation algorithms, fault detection and isolation, and distributed navigation systems. NGL research programs have been sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, the Boeing Co., and IIT Research Institute.
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Robotics LabRobots have recently graduated from structured laboratories to outdoor environments with varying and unstructured terrain. In order to be highly mobile and effective in these settings, robotics research will need to shift its focus to 1) understanding the underlying physics of robot/terrain interaction and 2) creating design methodologies for mechanically robust robots capable of multiple modes of locomotion such as running, leaping, and climbing.
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