The Materials Engineering research group is headed by Professor Norman A. Fleck and contains two subgroups: Micromechanics and Superconductivity.
Micromechanics brings together researchers interested in predicting the macroscopic mechanical behaviour of materials from an understanding of microstructure. This involves the application of mechanics to identifiable small-scale structures and the use of analytical and numerical methods to compute the macroscopic response. This science-based approach enables us to predict the behaviour of new materials without the need for slow and routine experimentation. Optimum microstructures can be forecast rather than found by trial and error.
The Bulk Superconductivity Group produces type II superconducting materials that generate high trapped magnetic fields for engineering applications. The research focuses predominantly on the properties and processing of large, single grain (RE)BCO and MgB2 materials, with a particular emphasis on flux pinning and sample microstructure.