UTFacultiesETNewsSTAR interview: next-generation materials and technologies in product development
Mehrshad Mehrpouya

STAR interview: next-generation materials and technologies in product development

In this STAR interview, we speak to Mehrshad Mehrpouya of the Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET). STAR is an acronym for (S)ituation, (T)asks, (A)ctions, (R)esults. We also have many “star” colleagues at UT with an interesting story to tell. Mehrshad Mehrpouya contributes to the nex-generation materials and technologies in product development.



What is/was the situation (S) of your research/initiative?

Smart materials have played a crucial role in the design and development of intelligent products across diverse applications over the past few decades. Shape memory materials, for instance, distinguish themselves by their ability to return to their original shape after deformation when exposed to specific stimuli. Despite numerous research efforts aimed at developing new materials and manufacturing techniques, further advancements are still needed to push the boundaries of this field and enable the development of a new generation of smart products with multifunctional properties.


What tasks (T) were or are you currently working on?

Currently, I lead research in the field of Advanced Manufacturing of Smart Materials and Structures (SMART) within our group/department. My research focuses on utilizing both existing and emerging smart alloys or polymers to drive innovation in the design and development of next-generation intelligent products. Advanced manufacturing technologies, particularly 3D/4D printing, play a pivotal role in enhancing the design complexity and functional performance of smart materials and structures. Therefore, there is a pressing need for further exploration into Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM) to effectively integrate design and manufacturing considerations in this research endeavor.


What actions (A) are you working on and who are involved?

Within our team, we utilize advanced single and multi-material 3D printing technologies to develop multifunctional products and structures with intricate geometries. This effort necessitates close collaboration among our group and other research teams, promoting multidisciplinary research across various fields and applications.

An illustrative example of our research is our current project focuses on manufacturing multifunctional implants and stents for medical applications. Utilizing advanced 3D printing technologies, we integrate two or more materials with diverse thermomechanical properties into a single device. This innovative approach aims to advance the development of medical devices by enhancing their multifunctional performance. Our collaborations with university hospitals, surgeons, and materials scientists are crucial in achieving these advancements.


What results (R) do you hope to achieve and how will society (or UT organization) perceive them?

The integration of novel smart materials and advanced manufacturing techniques holds promise across diverse sectors, ranging from smart bone implants in medicine to intelligent morphing devices in aerospace, or multifunctional actuators in automotive industries. Our primary objective is to advance both materials and fabrication processes, empowering designers to develop highly creative and innovative solutions that exceed the capabilities of traditional materials and conventional manufacturing techniques. This advancement is expected to enhance societal perception of our contributions, establishing our organization at the forefront of technological innovation in smart materials and manufacturing technologies.

Looking for a study in this field?

Master Industrial Engineering & Management | University of Twente (utwente.nl)

Master Mechanical Engineering | University of Twente (utwente.nl)

drs. J.G.M. van den Elshout (Janneke)
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