Undergraduate Program

Purdue University has one of the strongest engineering schools in the world, and our Materials Engineering students are first and foremost "Purdue Engineers." They share the same Freshman Engineering program as all other Engineering students at Purdue, before coming to the School of Materials Engineering in the sophomore year. The School is one of the smaller departments at Purdue, providing a nurturing environment with as much faculty contact as you care to use. The program is distinct from those of most other universities' Materials Science & Engineering departments in several ways...

Our program has a unique perspective.

Most introductory textbooks and undergraduate programs in materials science begin with the basics of structure, before going on to properties and then covering materials processing. This is a very logical structure that goes from fundamentals to applications, but tends to lose track of the essential connections. We follow a different approach at Purdue. Our program takes a "processing first" approach, since processing is the vital link that allows the engineer to control properties through the material's structure. Our students are trained to ask "how would I make that?" And in learning the practicalities of "how" they also learn the fundamentals of "why."

Our program is fully integrated.

Like many materials departments, Purdue's has grown out of an older school: in our case, Metallurgical Engineering. Unlike some of the others, however, we have not just added courses in new classes of material. In all of our courses, we teach the basics structure, processing, properties, and/or performance with examples drawn from all materials classes. When polymers replace structural metals, or ceramics are introduced to provide heat-resistance, our students and alumni are fully prepared for all of the materials challenges that arise.

Our program is highly collaborative.

Most of our courses are taught by teams of faculty, with different professors taking the lead each semester. Students work closely with the faculty, and the small class sizes mean that nobody gets left out. Strong co-op and internship programs provide collaborations with industry, and our capstone senior projects are year-long real life experiences in which teams of undergraduates (often including students from other engineering disciplines) work on projects developed by and for companies under joint supervision by Purdue faculty, and company engineers and managers. Recent projects have involved collaborations with IBM, Alcoa, Rolls-Royce Allison, Cummins Diesel Engine, and others.


2017 Industry Sponsored Senior Design Posters

ArcelorMittal: Correlation of Material Phase Hardness and Macroscopic Properties of 1180DP Steel

Arconic: Susceptibility of Ni-Based Superalloys to Hot Tears with Minor Element Additions

Buehler: Environmental Stress Cracking of Polymer Hoods of Abrasive Cutter in a Coolant-Rich Environment

Depuy: Near-Net Shape Reusable Masking Material for Application in Hip Stem Coatings

Haynes: Optimization of Superalloy Homogenization Cycles

Hiler: Characterization of the Shell Sand Mold Bonding Process

John Deere: Effects of Thermally-Sprayed Molybdenum Coating Characteristics on Wear Resistance

Juniper: Reliability of Silver Wire Bonds

Praxair: Optimization of Direct Metal Laser Sintering Parameters to Produce Crack Free Alloy 230

Rolls-Royce: Development of Na2SO4 Application Technique for Hot Corrosion Testing


2016 Industry Sponsored Senior Design Posters

Alcoa Analysis and Comparison of Ti-6Al-4V Billet for Forging Stock.pdf 

ArcelorMittal Characterization and Elimination of Solidification Hooks in Continuous Slab Castings.pdf 

Battery Innovation Center Materials Failure Analysis of High-Power Li-Ion Batteries.pdf 

Cummins High Pressure Fuel Injection Systems Shot Peening and its Effect on Residual Stress.pdf 

IBC DLC Impact of Thickness and Modulus on Adhesion of Diamond Like Carbon Coatings.pdf 

IBC PEO Structures and Properties in Varying Phase Composition of PEO Coatings.pdf

John Deere Remediation of Lost Compressive Residual Stresses in Carburized Steel Gears

Juniper Investigation of Microstructure Evolution in Advanced 3D Memory Devices I10.pdf 

Medtronic Effect of Thermal Aging on Solderability of ENEPIG Surface Finish Used in Printed Circuit Boards.pdf 

Rolls Royce Environmental Barrier Coatings for SiC Ceramic Matrix Composite Gas Turbine Blades.pdf

TRW Effects of Shot Peening on Residual Stresses in Gear Surfaces.pdf

U.S. Steel Characterization of Residual Stress During the Manufacturing of 1-inch Steel Coil.pdf


Our program has strong international links.

Faculty collaborations extend around the world, and undergraduates often have the opportunity to study abroad. Students from this School have recently studied in Japan, Spain, Australia and Germany. Check out more on the adventures of our own Study Abroad students.

Materials Engineering at Purdue is a small school compared with many of Purdue's other schools of engineering. Junior and senior level classes typically have twenty to twenty-five enrolled students. The small class size results in two things: 1) You will be called upon in class to answer questions, 2) Professors are readily available for consultation outside of class. Most MSE professors have open door policies and encourage students to stop by any time.

The first three years of the undergraduate program provide the basic educational core. In addition to the broad range of basic sciences and general education courses, the core provides a generic approach to the elements of materials science and engineering. The core exploits the idea that the field is composed of the key elements: processing, structure, properties, and performance. This concept provides a strong foundation, integrated across the materials classes: ceramics, metals, polymers, etc. The senior year is primarily elective, and allows students the opportunity to focus their program in at least two areas.

The undergraduate program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.abet.org.