Mechanical Engineering News

Undergraduate students earn spot in US Department of Energy's CWC

A team of Mechanical Engineering undergraduate students has secured a coveted spot in the upcoming Collegiate Wind Competition (CWC) 2024 organized by the United States Department of Energy (US DOE). The team, advised by Dr. Yong Hoon Lee, will represent the University of Memphis (UofM) at this prestigious event, showcasing their innovative ideas and designs in the field of wind energy. The UofM team emerged victorious in Phase 1 of the competition, earning a $2,000 prize to further support their participation in CWC 2024. The funds will help students refine their designs and bring ambitious concepts to life.

CWC 2024 provides a platform for undergraduate students from across the country to display their expertise in wind energy technologies. Participants are tasked with planning, designing, building, and testing small-scale wind turbines that effectively harness wind power and contribute to sustainable energy solutions. This competition not only allows students to showcase their talent but also fosters collaboration and innovation in the renewable energy sector. This enables aspiring engineers and scientists to come together, exchange ideas, and contribute to sustainable technologies advancement.

Throughout their journey, the team will be guided by Dr. Yong Hoon Lee, whose research focuses on wind energy. The team members are eager to present their skills and efforts in all aspects of the competition sub-tasks, including Turbine Prototype Contest & Turbine Testing Contest, Project Development Contest, and Connection Creation Contest. They strive to progress toward the final Phase 3 of the competition to prove the effectiveness and efficiency of their wind turbine design, highlighting its potential to contribute to a sustainable future.

As the UofM team gears up for the next phase of the competition, they are determined to leave a lasting impression and make their mark in the field of wind energy. With Dr. Yong Hoon Lee and the Department of Mechanical Engineering's support, they are well positioned to excel at CWC 2024, demonstrating the spirit of innovation and dedication UofM is known for.

Two MECH majors win 1st place at the WIPS conference

Krista Dyer
Title: Fatigue of Additively Manufactured Ti-6Al4V Cellular Structures under Uniaxial, Torsional, and Multiaxial Stresses
Category: Engineering
Advisor: Dr. Reza Molaei, Mechanical Engineering

Additive manufacturing (AM) is a rising, largely applicable manufacturing procedure. The ability to build complex geometry components is one of the many advantages of AM. Included in these complex geometries are metallic cellular structures. These structures have a variety of applications in fields such as biomedical, automotive, and aerospace engineering. To ensure the full range of applications can be utilized, it is vital to understand the fatigue behaviors of the porous structures. Fatigue is the result of cyclic loading and may cause components to fail at much lower stresses than their ultimate or yield strengths. There is a major gap in the information with regards to loadings outside of compression-compression. The purpose of this study is to model and predict the fatigue properties and behavior of Ti-6Al-4V cellular structures, under uniaxial, torsional, and multiaxial loadings. This research is divided into three stages: manufacturing, testing, and modeling. For this project, all components are built using the Laser Powder Bed Fusion AM technique. Analysis of the test results will lead to a single numerical model to predict the fatigue behavior for different porosities under any combination of loading.

Sophie Wood
Title: Sub-grid Scale Characteristics of Godunov-based Schemes for Cavitating Two-Phase Flows
Category: Physical and Applied Sciences
Advisor: Dr. Daniel Foti, Mechanical Engineering

Numerical accuracy of large-eddy simulations for cavitating flows decreases near discontinuities such as shock waves generated by vapor-bubble collapse, vapor-liquid phase boundaries, and complexities of solid boundaries. The errors can often be attributed to explicit sub-grid scale models. An alternative methodology, implicit large-eddy simulation, leverages the numerical discretization error of monotone, sharp-interface capturing schemes to mimic the physical dissipation rate. The characteristics of the numerical dissipation rate and implicit sub-grid scale are detailed for a class of Godunov-based schemes for cavitating flows discretized in generalized curvilinear coordinates. Because the variable reconstruction is performed locally, the scheme can capture both discontinuities and low Mach number features. Leading terms of modified equation analysis confirm the dissipation behaviors. A series of cases are undertaken including two-phase shock tube, homogeneous isotropic turbulence, and cavitating flow over a cylinder, which employs a sharp-interface immersed boundary method for compressible flow. The turbulence spectra, statistics and void fraction profiles show good agreement with direct numerical simulation.

Tenure-Track Faculty Position in Mechanical Engineering

The Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Memphis invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the rank of Assistant or Associate Professor, beginning August 2023. Candidates with teaching and research interests in all areas related to dynamics, system dynamics, controls, vibration, and mechatronics will be considered.

Duties include teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in mechanical engineering, obtaining research funding from external sponsors, supervising graduate students, and providing professional service. Applicants must have an earned doctoral degree in mechanical engineering or a related field, or earn the degree within the first semester of hire, have strong communication and teamwork skills, and a commitment to collaborate on interdisciplinary collaborative research. Those applying for Associate Professor position should have established record in research that demonstrates nationally and internationally recognized expertise.

The University of Memphis is the largest public university and engineering program in western Tennessee and has an enrollment of about 22,000 students. The Herff College of Engineering at The University of Memphis is nationally ranked in both its undergraduate and graduate programs. Additional information about the college and the department can be found on the Herff College of Engineering website.

The Department currently has 13 tenured/tenure-track faculty positions and an enrollment of about 350 students pursuing B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. New faculty hires are targeted towards individuals who can build strong externally-funded research programs, participate in interdisciplinary research, grow the departmental graduate programs, and establish themselves as outstanding educators.

The city of Memphis is an attractive location in Tennessee, and is world-renowned for its music, food, and hospitality. Memphis is home to three Fortune 500 companies (FedEx, International Paper, and AutoZone) and has a strong presence in health, biomedical devices, transportation, automotive, aero-propulsion and entertainment industries. The Herff College has many partnerships with local industry for both research and education applications.

Applications are to be submitted via https://workforum.memphis.edu. Click on the faculty box to find the posting for the Assistant/Associate Professor positions in Mechanical Engineering. Applications must include a teaching plan, research plan, a comprehensive curriculum vitae, and the full names and contact information of three professional references. The committee will begin screening applications on 1 December 2022 and will continue until the positions are filled.

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