Department of Engineering / Profiles / Professor Simon Guest

Department of Engineering

Professor Simon Guest


Simon Guest

Professor in Structural Mechanics

Academic Division: Civil Engineering (Head of Division)

Research group: Structures

Telephone: +44 1223 3 32708



Research interests

Dr Guest's research straddles the border between traditional structural mechanics, and the study of mechanisms; this academic area turns out to encompass many interesting technologies and provide many exciting and challenging problems. Much of my work is with the Advanced Structures Group.

The following pages describe my work in a number of areas:

  • Morphing lattice structures - Morphing structures can change their shape to respond to or alter their environment. Recently, there has been a great deal of interest in using lattice structures as the microstructure of a new class of morphing materials.
  • Biological structures - Many biological systems can be both structures and mechanisms; I've looked at the cytoskeleton, the scaffolding of cells, some aspects of the shape of proteins, the structure of some viruses, and the use of biomimetics to generate novel structures.
  • Symmetry - Structures and mechanisms that are symmetric often have interesting properties that depend on their symmetries.
  • Bistable structures - I have looked at a particular class of bistable structure, split tubes with essentially the same geometry as a carpenter's tape. These tubes can be made bistable, either by altering the bending stiffnesses of the structure so that it is no longer isotropic, or by setting up an initial prestress in the structure.
  • Deployable Structures - Deployable Structures are structures which can be reduced in size for transportation or storage, and then automatically deployed. Most commonly, these structures are used in space.

Strategic themes


Protein folding.

Research projects

  • Advanced Structures
  • Structures for the Biological Sciences
  • Structural Computation
  • Structural Theory

Teaching activity

  • 2nd year course in Structural Mechanics
  • 3rd year course in Mechanics of Solids


Simon Guest is a Reader in Structural Mechanics. His teaching is in structural mechanics, and his research straddles the border between traditional structural mechanics, and the study of mechanisms. He is also a fellow of Trinity Hall. He is currently Deputy Head of Department (teaching) in Engineering, looking after undergraduate courses.