Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

The Mechanical Engineering program (MSME) is designed as a course of study to provide graduate engineers with a deeper and broader understanding of the methods and skills in the area of mechanical engineering.

The program outcomes are achieved through knowledge and skills that students gain by virtue of expert curriculum design, instruction in an effective learning environment, and opportunities for inquiry and professional development.

Students will take courses in the following broad domains:

  • Thermal Systems: This domain includes instruction in renewable energy, energy conversion, computational fluid dynamics, turbomachinery, gas dynamics, electronics cooling, heat and mass transfer.
  • Mechanical Systems: This domain includes courses in applications of theory of elasticity, robotics, kinematics, advanced dynamics, composite materials and fracture mechanics.

Students will be able to identify, formulate, and solve advanced mechanical engineering problems. They will also be able to use the techniques, skills, and modern analytical and software tools necessary for the mechanical engineering practice. Sequences of electives, as well as a master's Project/Thesis, will assist in achieving the program's learning goals.

Program Overview

The aim of the MSME program is to achieve the following basic objectives:

  • Students will be educated in methods of advanced engineering analysis, including the mathematical and computational skills required for advanced problem solving. They will be trained to develop the skills and the ability to formulate solutions to problems, to think independently and creatively, to synthesize and integrate information/data, and to work and communicate effectively.
  • Students will be provided with in-depth knowledge that will allow them to apply innovative techniques to problems and utilize the tools they need to focus on new applications.
  • Students will avail themselves of a breadth of knowledge that fosters an awareness of and skills for interdisciplinary approaches to engineering problems.
  • Undergraduate students in mechanical, aerospace, civil, chemical, industrial, and manufacturing engineering have the opportunity to pursue, upon completion of their undergraduate studies, a graduate program that would allow them broader career paths and leadership roles in the mechanical engineering area. Students outside the above engineering fields (e.g. physics, applied mathematics, etc.) will be assigned to take specific bridge courses in their area of specialization interest to meet the course prerequisite.

Students

Mechanical engineering is a highly diverse discipline that ranges from the aesthetic aspects of design to highly technical research and development. The student population for the MSME program has several origins. Typical examples are as follows:

  • Engineers and scientists who, responding to the specific needs of their industry across the spectrum of special domains listed above, need to acquire skills so that they may effectively guide the development of technologies which will enhance product quality and business opportunities
  • Engineers and scientists who wish to fulfill their need for personal and professional growth in the mechanical engineering domain
  • Engineers who aspire to academic careers and those who wish to eventually continue their studies toward a Ph.D. degree
  • Engineers aspiring to a career change
  • Current undergraduate engineering students and alumni who desire an opportunity to continue their studies for an advanced engineering degree at Fairfield University

The MSME program offers two options for graduation: a thesis option which requires 33 credits, including the two-term thesis, and the non-thesis option which requires 36 credit hours.

Non-Thesis Option

The requirements are as follows:

ME 0415Engineering Applications of Numerical Methods3
Core Concentration Courses 1
Select eleven courses from the following:33
Thermal Systems 2
Thermal Management of Microdevices
Computational Fluid Dynamics
Energy Conversion
Heat and Mass Transfer
Turbomachinery
Mechanical Systems 3
Feedback and Control Systems
Design of Mechatronics Systems
Vibration Analysis
Theory and Applications of Robot Kinematics
Advanced Dynamics
Applications of Fracture Mechanics in Engineering Design
Mechanics of Composite Materials
Applications of Finite Element Analysis
Applications of Theory of Elasticity
Total Credits36
1

The objective of the elective courses is to provide students with areas of in-depth study, which are at the core of their major interests and career objectives.

2

This domain considers the broad areas of energy and turbomachinery, fluid dynamics and heat transfer. It includes study of conduction, convection, radiation, compressible and heated flows, combustion, and laminar and turbulent flows. Applications in design and analysis, processes and devices, gas turbines and renewable energy are considered.

3

The courses in this domain cover the broad areas of mechanical and dynamic systems. More specifically, the focus includes, but is not limited to, the dynamic behavior of mechanisms, mechanical systems, vibration analysis and machine dynamics. Research methods include a blend of techniques involving mathematics and computer simulation.

Thesis Option

Students may choose the thesis option provided they select an academic advisor and secure the approval of the program director.

In the event that a student in the thesis track wishes to switch to the non-thesis option, credits that might have been earned in the pursuit of a thesis will not count toward fulfilling the graduation requirement.

The requirements are as follows:

ME 0415Engineering Applications of Numerical Methods3
Core Concentration Courses 1
Select eight courses from the following:24
Thermal Systems 2
Thermal Management of Microdevices
Computational Fluid Dynamics
Energy Conversion
Heat and Mass Transfer
Turbomachinery
Mechanical Systems 3
Feedback and Control Systems
Design of Mechatronics Systems
Vibration Analysis
Theory and Applications of Robot Kinematics
Advanced Dynamics
Applications of Fracture Mechanics in Engineering Design
Mechanics of Composite Materials
Applications of Finite Element Analysis
Applications of Theory of Elasticity
Thesis
ME 0550Thesis I3
ME 0551Thesis II3
Total Credits33
1

The objective of the elective courses is to provide students with areas of in-depth study, which are at the core of their major interests and career objectives.

2

This domain considers the broad areas of energy and turbomachinery, fluid dynamics and heat transfer. It includes study of conduction, convection, radiation, compressible and heated flows, combustion, and laminar and turbulent flows. Applications in design and analysis, processes and devices, gas turbines and renewable energy are considered.

3

The courses in this domain cover the broad areas of mechanical and dynamic systems. More specifically, the focus includes, but is not limited to, the dynamic behavior of mechanisms, mechanical systems, vibration analysis and machine dynamics. Research methods include a blend of techniques involving mathematics and computer simulation.

ME 0400 Feedback and Control Systems3 Credits

This course emphasizes analysis and synthesis of closed loop control systems using both classical and state-space approaches with an emphasis on electro-mechanical systems. The mathematical requirements include the Laplace transform methods of solving differential equations, matrix algebra and basic complex variables. The discussion of classical control system design includes the modeling of dynamic systems, block diagram representation, time and frequency domain methods, transient and steady state response, stability criteria, controller action [Proportional (P), proportional and integral (PI), Proportional, integral and derivative (PID) and pseudo-derivatives feedback], root locus methods, the methods of Nyquist and Bode and dynamics compensation techniques. The discussion of state-space methods includes formulation and solution (analytical and computer-based) of the state equations and pole-placement design. The course integrates the use of computer-aided analysis and design tools (MATLAB) so as to ensure relevance to the design of real world controlled electro-mechanical systems using case studies and applications to electrical and mechanical systems. Includes lab (hardware based) exercises.

ME 0405 Design of Mechatronics Systems3 Credits

This course covers development of mechatronics theory and applications to systems dependent upon the integration of mechanical, electrical and computer engineering. Students assemble hardware components to create a product design that fulfills a specified task in a mechatronics system. Students develop design skills in mechanisms, electrical devices, and software to create, test, and verify system function. Sessions include lab projects. Students will be challenged to develop a publication-worthy white paper as a final deliverable along with their final project.

ME 0410 Vibration Analysis3 Credits

Fundamental laws of mechanics. Free and forced vibration of discrete single and multi-degree- of-freedom systems. Periodic and harmonic motion, viscous damping, and measures of energy dissipation. Modal analysis for linear systems. Computational methods in vibration analysis. Natural frequencies and mode shapes. Analytical dynamics and Lagrange equation. Longitudinal, torsional, and flexural vibration of continuous elastic systems, (strings, rods, beams). Energy methods. Approximate methods for distributed parameter systems. Dynamic response by direct numerical integration methods. ANSYS modeling will be covered. Students are required to conduct an independent research on one of the new and emerging energy sources, write a research report and make a class presentation on their research.

ME 0410L Product Manufacturing Lab1 Credit

This course is designed to be an introductory course in the Product Manufacturing field. The course provides theoretical concepts as well as the development of the knowledge and skills required in CNC programming, machine setup and operation, 3D printing, laser, manual machining and metrology. The laboratory portion emphasizes practical application of CNC machine tools, 3D printing, and manual machining, which involve set-ups and procedures for operation.

ME 0411 Theory and Applications of Robot Kinematics3 Credits

Topics in advanced kinematics include introduction to basic concepts and definitions related to kinematics, commonly used links and joints, kinematic analysis of mechanisms, introduction to robotic mechanisms, homogeneous transformations, Euler angles, Denavit-Hartenberg representation of forward kinematics of robots, inverse kinematics solution of robots, degeneracy and dexterity, and differential motion and velocity relations. Industrial application of kinematics will also be covered and the course will include a laboratory or project component.

ME 0412 Advanced Dynamics3 Credits

The topics in the area of dynamics include degrees of freedom, generalized coordinates, constraints, physics of failure, flexures, and optomechanics. The course will focus on practical applications of advanced dynamics, including linkages, cams, and kinematics mechanisms, as well as computer applications and project design. Students will be challenged to develop a publication-worthy white paper as a final deliverable along with their final project.

ME 0415 Engineering Applications of Numerical Methods3 Credits

This course provides students with the theoretical basis to proceed in future studies. Topics include root-finding, interpolation, linear algebraic systems, numerical integration, numerical solution of ordinary and partial differential equations, modeling, simulation, initial boundary value problems, and two point boundary value problems.

ME 0423 Thermal Management of Microdevices3 Credits

This course addresses the thermal design in electronic assemblies which includes thermal characteristics, heat transfer mechanisms and thermal failure modes. Thermal design of electronic devices enables engineers to prevent heat-related failures, increase the life expectancy of the system, and reduce emitted noise and energy consumption. This course provides the required knowledge of heat transfer for such analysis and various options available for thermal management of electronics. This course also presents advanced methods of removing heat from electronic circuits, including heat pipes, liquid immersion and forced convection.

ME 0424 Micro and Nano Manufacturing3 Credits

This course will introduce students to the latest advancements in micro and nano manufacturing. The course will enable students to become familiar with advanced manufacturing techniques in light of the global emphasis on micro and nano manufacturing. Topics to be covered include lithography, mechanical micromachining, laser fabrication, polymers and nanocomposites, and nano imprinting. The important topics of metrology and process control at the micro and nano scale will also be discussed. Students will conduct a class project integrating the different processes for an application in electromechanical or biomedical field. A lab component is also present where students get a hands-on experience with material processing and characterization tools.

ME 0427 Applications of Fracture Mechanics in Engineering Design3 Credits

This course covers fracture mechanics concepts for design, materials selection, and failure analysis. The fundamental principles of fracture parameters and criteria, stress field at the tip of a crack, fracture toughness, thickness effect, plastic zone concept, and crack growth under cyclic loading and aggressive environment will be presented. Emphasis will be placed on the practical applications of fracture mechanics by incorporation of design problems and laboratory demonstrations in the course. Emphasis will be placed on the practical applications of fracture mechanics by incorporation of a failure investigation study where the students utilize the skills developed with the course to root cause a real world failure. Taking a holistic approach each student will have their own case study and learn to incorporate fracture mechanics, material science, mechanics of materials, computer simulation and manufacturing techniques and knowledge into their project. Students select a related research topic, identify a technical paper to review and give a class presentation.

ME 0428 Computational Fluid Dynamics3 Credits

Introduction to computational methods used for the solutions of advanced fluid dynamics problems. Emphasis on concepts in finite difference methods as applied to various ordinary and partial differential model. Equations in fluid mechanics, fundamentals of spatial discretization, numerical integration, and numerical linear algebra. A focus on the engineering and scientific computing environment. Other topics may include waves, advanced numerical methods (like spectral, finite element, finite volume), non-uniform grids, turbulence modeling, and methods complex boundary conditions. Students select a related research topic, identify a technical paper to review and give a class presentation.

ME 0444 Mechanics of Composite Materials3 Credits

While the use of man-made composites have existed for centuries for practical applications, engineered composite materials are finding increasing use in many high technology applications such as aerospace, electronics, sporting goods, and structural components for high stability systems. This course is designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of classification, processing, properties, selection and failure of polymer, metal and ceramic based composite materials. Students select a related research topic, identify a technical paper to review and give a class presentation.

ME 0451 Energy Conversion3 Credits

This course covers selected topics in energy conversion, including fuels used in energy conversion, solar energy, gas turbine engines and applications, internal combustion engines, battery power, heat pumps, classic and novel power and refrigeration cycles, system analysis, system economics, and environmental considerations. The course includes computer simulation of power plant performance to optimize energy conversion efficiency. A research report and class presentation of an independent research on one of the emerging sources of energy is an essential part of this course.

ME 0452 Heat and Mass Transfer3 Credits

This course covers the basic concepts of conduction, convection, and radiation heat transfer. Boiling and condensation, design and performance of selected thermal systems (including heat exchangers), and laminar and turbulent flows as related to forced and free convection are all studied. Mathematical modeling of engineering systems using modern analytical and computational solution methods are also covered. Students are required to conduct an independent research on one of the new and emerging energy sources, write a research report and make a class presentation on their research.

ME 0453 Turbomachinery3 Credits

Theory and fundamentals of modern turbomachinery for aerospace (helicopter, aircraft) and power generation (marine, industrial) applications. Brayton engine cycle analysis and performance improvement are examined. Applications of the principles of fluid mechanics and thermodynamics to the design of turbines and compressors are discussed; analysis and velocity diagram for axial compressors, centrifugal compressors and axial turbines. Discussion of combustion and environmental emissions is included. Students are required to conduct an independent research on one of the new and emerging energy sources, write a research report and make a class presentation on their research.

ME 0470 Applications of Finite Element Analysis3 Credits

This course examines applications of finite element analysis in modern engineering including structural analysis, fluid flow, heat transfer, and dynamics. Finite element formulations covering two and three dimensional elements as well as energy methods are developed. Students develop techniques for application of finite element method in structural design, dynamic system response, fluid and thermal analyses. Application of methodology to fluid flow is presented. Students solve example and design problems manually and using modern finite-element analysis software, ANSYS and FLUENT. Students are required to conduct an independent research on one of the new and emerging energy sources, write a research report and make a class presentation on their research.

ME 0472 Applications of Theory of Elasticity3 Credits

This course covers theory of elasticity (stress, strain, and generalized Hooke's law), strain energy methods (Castigliano's theorem), thin shells of revolution (equilibrium equations, pressure vessels), thin plates (rectangular and circular plates, moment-curvature relations), beams of elastic foundations and buckling. Students are required to conduct an independent research on one of the new and emerging energy sources, write a research report and make a class presentation on their research.

ME 0495 Independent Study3 Credits

A well-planned program of individual study under the supervision of the faculty member.

ME 0550 Thesis I3 Credits

The master's thesis is intended to be a test of the student's ability to formulate a problem, solve it, and communicate the results. The thesis is supervised on an individual basis by a faculty member. A thesis involves the ability to gather information, examine it critically, think creatively, organize effectively, and write convincingly; it is a project that permits the student to demonstrate skills that are basic to both academic and work in industry. The student must also submit a paper for possible inclusion in a refereed journal appropriate to the topic.

ME 0551 Thesis II3 Credits

The master's thesis is intended to be a test of the student's ability to formulate a problem, solve it, and communicate the results. The thesis is supervised on an individual basis by a faculty member. A thesis involves the ability to gather information, examine it critically, think creatively, organize effectively, and write convincingly; it is a project that permits the student to demonstrate skills that are basic to both academic and work in industry. The student must also submit a paper for possible inclusion in a refereed journal appropriate to the topic.