Materials Engineering & Processing

The Materials Engineering and Processing (MEP) group supports fundamental research addressing the interrelationship of materials processing, structure, properties and/or life-cycle performance for targeted applications.

We continually look for ways to improve processes and performance while extracting cost by focusing on the areas of advanced composites, additive manufacturing and high-temperature structures.  Studying the surfaces and behaviors of materials such as ceramics, functional magnetic materials, metal thin films, and Inconel, including the development of nanocrystalline materials and microstructural gradients in metallic materials. Through this research we build structures that hope to deliver dramatic cost and weight savings, while enabling our products to excel in extreme environments. 

Kevin Chen

Dr. Kevin Chen's research focuses on scalable 3D laser manufacturing from nanoscale to macroscale. Sensor fused additive manufacturing.

Markus Chmielus


The Chmielus Advanced Manufacturing & Magnetic Materials Lab (AM³, www.chmieluslab.org) focuses its research on investigating the relationship between powder, composition, manufacturing, processing, microstructure and properties of structural and functional materials. We are employing traditional and additive manufacturing and quantitative characterization techniques at Pitt and with partners to achieve this goal from fundamental to applied research.

Youngjae Chun


Dr. Chun has developed various metallic biomaterial-based endovascular devices for treating brain/aortic aneurysms, cardiovascular disease, peripheral arterial disease, vascular injuries and trauma. Dr. Chun's current primary research interests include artificial smart biomaterials, bio-hybrid composites, endovascular devices, diagnostic vascular implants, and micro-bio-systems, as well as fundamental device-associated biocompatibility and development of experimental methods.

Minking Chyu

Utilizing advanced manufacturing technologies in developing novel materials and coating techniques for thermal protection and cooling of hot sections in aeroengine and power generation turbines. More effective thermal protection and cooling design lead to an increased cycle efficiency and less fuel consumption.

C. Isaac Garcia

Alloy design, thermomechanical processing, transformation and precipitation studies. Microstructural-Properties Optimization. Non-Destructive Testing (UT and EMAT techniques). Computer simulations and physical simulations (CAL and BA simulators).

Tevis Jacobs


Our group focuses on mechanics, tribology, and functional properties of surfaces and small-scale structures. We use novel combinations of in situ electron microscopy, multi-scale mechanical testing, and scanning probe microscopy to characterize components from the nanoscale to the macroscale.

Prashant Kumta

Work in Professor Prashant N. Kumta’s laboratory focuses on innovative synthesis, fabrication and additive manufacturing of novel materials and architectures for energy and biotechnologies. Specifically, research is directed at fundamental characterization and obtaining a scientific understanding of structure and property relationships of novel materials and platforms for batteries, fuel cells, electrocatalysts, photoelectrocatalysts, degradable scaffolds, functionalization of scaffolds for tissue regeneration, drug and protein delivery, non-viral gene delivery, as well as embryonic stem cell differentiation.

Paul Leu


The Laboratory for Advanced Materials at Pittsburgh (LAMP) focuses on (1) Photonics and Energy and (2) Multifunctional Surfaces.

Ravi Shankar


Shankar’s research is at the nexus of material, microstructural and mechanical design to realize systems with unprecedented functionalities. His research includes, development of nanocrystalline materials and microstructural gradients in metallic materials to endow improved manufacturability and functional properties such as biocompatibility, corrosion resistance and tribological properties. He also pioneered new classes of materials and designs that offer direct conversion of light into mechanical actuation to enable devices that can be powered and controlled remotely with photonic energy. In the additive manufacturing domain, his research on metallic materials has identified interlinkages between residual stresses, part distortion and DMLS process parameters. In polymeric systems, he is exploring frameworks for programming materials at the molecular level in macroscopic freeforms to enable new classes of morphing structures and manipulators that can be powered and controlled using otherwise unstructured ambient stimuli such as heat, light, solvents etc.

Albert To


Dr. Albert To’s expertise is in computational mechanics, topology optimization, and multiscale methods for advanced manufacturing. His current research activities include fast process modeling, process-microstructure-process relationship, support structure optimization, and cooling channel design for laser-based metal additive manufacturing.

Guofeng Wang

Dr. Guofeng Wang's research is to develop and apply Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME) methods for certification of advanced manufacturing techniques.

Jorg Wiezorek

Dr. Wiezorek’s group performs physical metallurgy related research on the characterization, design and engineering of microstructures to understand, optimize and enhance the properties of primarily metal based material, such as Al-, Mg-, Ti-, Ni-, Fe-alloys and intermetallics, for both structural and functional applications. The research utilizes expert application of electron-, ion- and photon-beam based analyses, such as scanning and transmission electron microscopy as well as X-ray diffraction methods, and processing by plastic deformation, thermo-mechanical and continuous wave and pulsed laser-based processing of bulk and thin film materials to elucidate processing-microstructure-property relationships, resulting in tailoring of the processing paths for enhanced performance in the envisaged application environments.

Wei Xiong


Dr. Wei Xiong leads the PMMD (Physical Metallurgy and Materials Design) Laboratory with the research focus on bridging fundamental materials science and materials engineering applications. The lab studies the relation of process-structure-property using high-throughput experiments and computation, which further support new materials design and processing optimization.

Xiayun (Sharon) Zhao

Dr. Zhao worked as an instrumentation and control system engineer in Houston for a couple of years before pursuing her Ph.D. Her dissertation with advisor Dr. David Rosen was “Real-time Process Measurement and Control for Photopolymer Additive Manufacturing.” She received award of “Excellence in Graduate Polymer Research” from the American Chemical Society (ACS). She has published in journals including Measurement Science and Technology, Rapid Prototyping, and Additive Manufacturing. Her research focuses on real-time process monitoring, measurement science and control technology for additive manufacturing, as well as on advanced manufacturing (e.g., 3D/4D/Bio/Hybrid Printing) for multi-scale, multi-material and multi-functional structures and systems in novel applications.