Mechanical Engineering at the University of Twente covers a broad field of academic endeavour. Our research activities focus on designing, manufacturing, implementing and adjusting products, materials, processes and tools (machines, equipment, installations).
The section of Applied Mechanics is part of the department Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & Systems and comprises four research groups:
Nonlinear Solid Mechanics: conducts research into nonlinear material modelling, algorithm development and nonlinear analysis, and the optimization of structures and processes.
Structural Dynamics, Acoustics & Control: focuses mainly on three themes:1) Fluid-structure interaction and acoustics, 2) Structural dynamics, and 3) Control and mechatronics. The group’s mission is to carry out a systematic, long-term research programme on the themes of ‘nonlinear structural dynamics’, ‘fluid structure interaction and acoustics’, and ‘Control and Mechatronics’.
Precision Engineering: focuses on research in the field of design principles to develop products (e.g. flexible hinges) using efficient non-linear computer modelling, topology optimization methods and additive manufacturing techniques.
Dynamics Based Maintenance: focuses on research into systems and structures that are subjected to dynamic loading throughout their operational lifetime, causing wear, degradation and loss of functionality. This research group also contributes to the specialisation Maintenance Engineering & Operations.
The Biomechanical Engineering department is specialized in the field of biomedical technology and the integration of techniques and tools from a variety of disciplines for studying numerous aspects of human functioning. The group also conducts fundamental research into the special mechanical properties of living biological tissue to develop tools and methodologies in each of the original disciplines. Research focuses on the interaction between the human locomotor system and aids that can support this system.
The research conducted by the Design, Production and Management department focuses on understanding and improving design processes. The group’s strategic goal is the development of methods and tools for scenario-based, user-oriented product development against the background of the requirements and constraints of the entire product life cycle. The maintenance Engineering group within this department focuses on improving the maintenance of technical systems, using research into design methods. This research group also contributes to the specialization Maintenance Engineering & Operations.
The Elastomer Technology and Engineering group is part of the department Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & Systems and has established itself as a ‘chain of knowledge’ in the field of rubber technology, with a clear emphasis on research subjects at the cutting edge of new developments. The elastomer world is facing a series of important research challenges for the future. The most important challenge is the global need to reduce energy consumption. This is followed by the need to find feasible recycling routes for rubber products. Finally, the group is researching environmental and safety issues related to the use of various rubber ingredients in production processes as well as in use.
The Engineering Fluid Dynamics group is part of the department Thermal & Fluid Engineering and conducts scientific research into theoretical, numerical and experimental fluid dynamics, driven by applications in fields such as mechanical engineering, maritime engineering, aerospace engineering and process technology. The group’s research themes include the fluid mechanics of rotating flow machinery, aero-acoustics, and multi-phase flows.
The research carried out by the Multi Scale Mechanics group, which is part of the department Thermal & Fluid Engineering, focus on condensed matter physics, specifically granular materials and powders, micro-fluid systems, self-healing materials and a variety of other complex phenomena, using a multiscale modelling approach.
‘Processing’ and ‘Product performance’ of lightweight materials (e.g. thermoplastic composite fibre reinforced materials) in structural applications are key concepts in the main research themes of the Production Technology group which is part of the department Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & System. The group aims to operate at the forefront of research in the field, and to have an innovative impact on the industry.
Research conducted by the Surface Technology and Tribology section, which are part of the department Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & Systems and focuses on the interaction of surfaces. Operational conditions have a significant impact on the physics involved in surface interaction in any given situation. The research themes of the Surface Technology and Tribology group are related to high-tech systems and energy, tribology of living tissue, and reliability and durability. The Laser Processes group within this section focuses on the development and application of technology for laser materials processing (e.g.3D metal printing). The Skin Tribology group focuses on the interaction of human skin and product surfaces. The Tribology Based Maintenance group within this section develops knowledge that should lead to the prediction and/or extension of maintenance intervals of systems with respect to friction and wear. This research group also contributes to the specialization Maintenance Engineering & Operations.
Research in the Thermal Engineering group, which is part of the department Thermal & Fluid Engineering, is concerned with questions related to industrial applications of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and heat and mass transport. The emphasis is on the efficient use of energy and on minimizing environmental impact in the form of pollution. The group’s research themes cover fuel conversion processes, turbulent combustion and acoustics, and unsteady and turbulent convective heat transfer.