Seminar Series

Photo of seminar speaker in auditorium

If you are interested in mechanics—including dynamics, fluids and solids—we encourage you to attend the Mechanics Seminar Series. Our seminar features several distinguished faculty and researchers each semester. We also encourage advanced graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to present their research (seminar registration is not required to do so).

Each weekly lecture is held on Fridays from 11 to 11:50 a.m. To subscribe to email announcements of upcoming seminars and other relevant news for mechanicians at UW-Madison, please send an email to join-mechanics@lists.wisc.edu. If you are interested in presenting your mechanics research, please contact Engineering Physics Assistant Professor Jacob Notbohm at jacob.notbohm@wisc.edu. We seek speakers in the areas of solid mechanics and materials, fluid mechanics/dynamics, and structural and multi-body dynamics. We welcome talks on the application of mechanics to any field or industry.

If you are a UW-Madison student and would like to take the seminar for credit, it is offered as a 1-credit course under BME 601, CivEngr 649, EMA 601, and ME 601. Course description: A weekly seminar series given by campus and visiting speakers on topics across the spectrum of mechanics research (solids, fluids, and dynamics). Enrolled students are required to attend, encouraged to participate in the discussion, and must complete three seminar summaries over the course of the semester.

Fall 2021 Seminar Schedule

Fridays, 11 to 11:50 a.m., 1106 Mechanical Engineering 

Sept. 10—Seminar Course Organizational Meeting (for enrolled students only)

Sept. 17—Prof. Colleen Witzenburg, Biomedical Engineering, UW-Madison

Sept. 24—Prof. Venanzio Cichella, Mechanical Engineering, University of Iowa (Host: Prof. Xiangru Xu)

Oct. 1—Prof. Ramathasan Thevamaran, Engineering Physics, UW-Madison

Oct. 8—Prof. Sage Kokjohn, Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison

Oct. 15—Prof. L. Catherine Brinson, Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Duke University — Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker (HOST: Prof. R. Thevamaran)

Oct. 22—Prof. Caterina Lamuta, Mechanical Engineering, University of Iowa (Host: Prof. Stephan Rudykh)

Oct. 29—Prof. Hiroki Sone, Civil and Environmental Engineering, UW-Madison

Nov. 5—Prof. Marc Geers, Mechanical Engineering, Eindhoven University of Technology — Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker (HOST: Prof. R. Thevamaran)

Nov. 12—Student Talks:

  • Claudio Meza-Valle, Ph.D. Student, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • OPEN

Nov. 19—Prof. Rachel Vitali, Mechanical Engineering, University of Iowa (HOSTS: Prof. Peter Adamczyk and Prof. Corrine Henak)

Dec. 3—Student Talks (initially reserved for enrolled students):

  • OPEN
  • OPEN

Dec. 10—Prof. Owen Kingstedt, Mechanical Engineering, University of Utah (HOSTS: Prof. Jacob Notbohm and Prof. Christian Franck)

Seminar Series Archive

Each semester, experts from on campus and around the country give public talks to our faculty, staff and students. Here are lists of our past speakers.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Spring 2021 speakers

For the spring 2021 semester, our virtual seminar speakers included:

Jan. 29—Introductory meeting (for enrolled students only)

Feb. 5—Prof. Corinne Henak, University of Wisconsin-Madison: “Cartilage fracture: mechanics and mechanobiology”

Feb. 12—Prof. Matt McDowell, Georgia Institute of Technology: “Chemo-Mechanics of Active Materials and Interfaces in Batteries”

Feb. 19—Prof. Ivan Christov, Purdue University: “Multiphysics problems at low Reynolds number: From deformable channels to spinning droplets”

Feb. 26—Dr. Eric Parish, Sandia National Laboratories, “Recent advancements in projection-based reduced-order modeling”

March 5—Prof. Ivan Bermejo-Moreno, University of Southern California, “Interactions of shock waves, turbulent boundary layers, and flexible panels”

March 12—Prof. Nimish Pujara, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Shape- and scale-dependent coupling between non-spherical particles and velocity gradients in turbulence”

March 19—Prof. Margaret Byron, Pennsylvania State University: “Scale-dependent complexity in locomotion: swimming across scales”

March 26—Prof. Pavana Prabhakar, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Architected Composites for Resilient Structures”

April 2—No seminar

April 9—Prof. Karen Flack, U.S. Naval Academy (Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker), “Prediction of Drag for Rough Wall Boundary Layer Flows”

April 16—Graduate student talks

Fall 2020 speakers

For the spring 2020 semester, our speakers included:

Sept. 11—Prof. Jacob Notbohm, Harvey D. Spangler Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Physics, UW-Madison; “Mechanics Across Scales in Biological Materials” (A special preview of his Society for Experimental Mechanics Springer/Nature Publishing Young Investigator Lecture)

Sept. 18—Prof. Richard Wiebe, Assistant Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, University of Washington, “Characterizing and Exploiting Nonlinear Dynamics and Instabilities in Structural Engineering”

Sept. 25—Three short talks from Prof. Samantha Daly and two of her research group members at University of California, Santa Barbara:

  • Bhavana Swaminathan, PhD Candidate in Materials Science, UCSB, “Micromechanical Characterization of Damage Accumulation in Ceramic Matrix Composites”
  • Caelin Muir, PhD Candidate in Materials Science, UCSB, “Large scale statistical methods to evaluate damage accumulation in SiC/SiC composites”
  • Prof. Samantha Daly, Department of Mechanical Engineering, UCSB, “Using Data-Driven Approaches for High Throughput Experiment and Analyses”

Oct. 2—Two short talks by researchers in Prof. Christian Franck’s Group:

  • Selda Buyukozturk, Visiting Scholar, UW-Madison Department of Mechanical Engineering/ Doctoral Candidate in Materials Science and Engineering, Brown University, “Expanding Inertial Microcavitation Rheometry to Cover Large Material Stretches in Soft Materials”
  • Dr. Jin Yang     Postdoc, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Dynamic Rugae Strain Localizations and Instabilities in Soft Viscoelastic Materials During Inertial Microcavitation”

Oct. 9—Prof. Janice Barton, Professor of Experimental Mechanics, Bristol Composites Institute (ACCIS), Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Civil, Aerospace, and Mechanical Engineering, University of Bristol, UK; “Adventures in Thermomechanics: from slow to fast, from expensive to low cost and across length scales” (A special reprise of her Society for Experimental Mechanics Murray Lecture)

Oct. 16—Prof. Sung Hoon Kang, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Hopkins Extreme Materials Institute, Institute for NanoBioTechnology Johns Hopkins University, “Architected materials with adaptive energy absorption and bioinspired self-adaptable materials & medical devices”

Oct. 23—Two short talks:

  • Koichiro Tanaka, graduate student in Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, “Interface Engineering to Enhance the Mechanical Performance of Thin Metal Films Deposited on Polymer Substrates”
  • Dr. Scott Grutzik, Senior Mechanical Engineer, Component Science and Mechanics, Sandia National Laboratories, “R-Curve Measurements of silicon nitride, glass ceramic, and PZT”

Oct. 30—Short talks from Prof Wendy Crone’s research group members at University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • Alana Stempien, Ph.D. candidate in Biomedical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Quantifying Mechanical Strain in Stem Cell Derived Cardiomyocytes in a Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Disease Model”
  • Prof. Wendy Crone, Karen Thompson Medhi Professor, Department of Engineering Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Stem Cell Derived Cardiomyocytes and Cardiac Fibroblasts in a Micropatterned Co-Culturing Platform”

Nov. 6—Short talks by researchers in Prof. Cosme Furlong group at Worcester Polytechnic Institute:

  • Haimi Tang, “Holographic Measurement of Semi-transparent Tympanic Membrane Shape Using Multiple Angle Illuminations”
  • Haimi Tang, “High speed Holographic Shape and Vibration Measurement of the Semi-transparent Tympanic Membrane”
  • Daniel Ruiz-Cadalso, Ph.D. Candidate in Mechanical Engineering, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, “Design and rapid prototyping of fiber-optic-based force sensors by two-photon polymerization”

Nov. 13—Short talks from Prof R. Thevamaran’s research group members at University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • Claire Griesbach, Ph.D. candidate in Engineering Mechanics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Strength and Toughness of Gradient-Nano-Grained Silver Created via High-Velocity Impact of Single-Crystal Silver Microcubes”
  • Prof. Ramathasan Thevamaran, Assistant Professor, Department of Engineering Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Emergence of Exceptional Points in PT-Symmetric Fractal Elastodynamic Metamaterials”

Spring 2020 speakers

For the spring 2020 semester, our speakers included:

Jan. 24—Introductory Lecture (for enrolled students only)

Jan. 31—Prof. Leslie Smith, Professor, Department of Mathematics & Department of Engineering Physics, UW-Madison

Feb. 7—Dr. Paul Veers, Senior Research Fellow, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Feb. 14—Prof. Tracey Holloway, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, UW-Madison

Feb. 21—Dr. Jin Yang, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison

Feb. 28—(1) Kate Lyons, PhD Student, Nuclear Engineering & Engineering Physics Graduate Program, UW-Madison and (2) Kyusic Park, PhD Student, Mechanical Engineering Graduate Program, UW-Madison

March 6—Dr. Nathan Bechle, Computer & Electronics Engineer, Forest Products Laboratory

March 13—Prof. Marc Killpack, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Brigham Young University

March 20—Spring break; no seminar

Due to COVID-19, remaining seminars will be rescheduled for future dates.

Fall 2019 speakers

For the fall 2019 semester, our speakers included:

Sept 20—Student talks: Ahmet Deniz Usta (Eriten Lab), graduate student in mechanical engineering, UW-Madison; Aditya Nagaraj (Min Lab), graduate student in mechanical engineering, UW-Madison

Sept. 27—Prof. Mike Graham, Chemical and Biological Engineering, UW-Madison

Oct. 4—Prof. Krishnan Suresh, Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison

Oct. 11—Prof. Nadia Lapusta, CalTech (Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker)

Oct. 18—Prof. Nimish Pujara, Civil and Environmental Engineering, UW-Madison

Oct. 25—Student talks: Alana Stempien (Crone Lab), graduate student in biomedical engineering, UW-Madison; Vinay Damodaran (Prabhakar Lab), graduate student in civil and environmental engineering, UW-Madison

Nov. 1—Dr. Jacqueline Chen, Sandia National Laboratories (Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker)

Nov. 8—Student talks: Dr. Jizhe Cai (Thevamaran Lab), postdoc in engineering physics, UW-Madison; Yanghao “Harry” Fang (Thevamaran Lab), graduate student in materials science and engineering, UW-Madison

Nov. 15—Prof. Jenn Stroud Rossmann (co-sponsored by Women in Science and Engineering Leadership Institute, WISELI)

Nov. 22—Prof. Nathan Salowitz, Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Thanksgiving—No Seminar

Dec. 6—Dr. Phillip Reu, Sandia National Laboratories

Spring 2019 speakers

For the spring 2019 semester, our speakers included:

Feb. 1—Student talks: David Rutkowski, graduate student in Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison; Alex Dawson-Elli, graduate student in Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison

Feb. 8—Student talks: Alex Ames, graduate student in Engineering Mechanics, UW-Madison; Chris Noble, graduate student in Engineering Mechanics, UW-Madison

Feb. 15—Prof. Ahmed Elbanna, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Feb. 22—Prof. Karen Kasza, Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University

March 1—Prof. Jose Pincheira, Associate Professor, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UW-Madison

March 8—Prof. Kevin Hart, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Mechanical, Milwaukee School of Engineering

March 15—Prof. Melih Eriten, Associate Professor, Dept. of Mechanical, Engineering, UW-Madison

March 22—Spring break/no seminar

March 29—Prof. Curt A. Bronkhorst, Professor, Department of Engineering Physics, UW-Madison

April 5—Engineering Expo

April 12—Prof. Igor Bargatin, Class of 1965 Term Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Univ. of Pennsylvania

April 19—Prof. Detlef Lohse, Professor, Dept. of Physics of Fluids, Univ. of Twente, The Netherlands (Midwest Mechanics Seminar Speaker)

April 26—Student talks: David Murgado, graduate student in Engineering Mechanics, UW-Madison; talk 2 is OPEN

May 3—Prof. Feng Zhao, Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director, Dept. Biomedical Engineering, Michigan Technological Univ.

Spring 2018 speakers

For the spring 2018 semester, our speakers included:

Jan. 26—Meeting with all enrolled students

Feb. 2—Gustavo Parra?Montesinos, C.K. Wang Professor of Structural Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, UW?Madison

Feb. 9—
John Considine, Materials Research Engineer, Forest Products Laboratory (Read a summary of this talk)

Feb. 16, 23—Student talks

March 2—Dan Negrut, Mead Witter Foundation Professor, Mechanical Engineering, UW?Madison

March 9—Julien Meaud, Assistant Professor, The George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology

March 10—NOTE that Purdue is hosting the Midwest Society for Experimental Mechanics Symposium on March 10th. Undergraduate and graduate students are encouraged to attend.

March 16—Riccardo Bonazza, Professor, Engineering Physics, UW?Madison

March 23—Patrick Le Tallec, Professeur, Directeur du Laboratoire de Me?canique des Solides (MidWest Mechanics Speaker)

March 30—Spring break week; no seminar

April 6—Engineering EXPO; no seminar (volunteer)

April 13—Joe Shepherd, C. L. “Kelly” Johnson Professor of Aeronautics and Mechanical Engineering, California Institute of Technology (MidWest Mechanics Speaker)

April 20, 27—Student talks

Fall 2017 speakers

For the fall 2017 semester, our speakers included:

Sept. 8—No seminar

Sept. 15—Student talk: Christopher VanDamme, Graduate Student, Engineering Mechanics Program, Department of Engineering Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison: “The application and validation of reduced order models for computing the geometrically nonlinear response of hypersonic vehicles”

Sept. 22—Professor Chiara Daraio, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology (Midwest Mechanics Speaker): “Plant nanobionic materials for thermally active, structural woods and soft, artificial skins” (Read a summary of Chiara’s talk.)

Sept. 29—Professor John Dolbow, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University (Midwest Mechanics Speaker): “The Mechanics of the Surfactant?Driven Fracture of Particle Rafts and the Influence of Surface Tension”

Oct. 6—Professor Naomi Chesler, Professor and Vice Chair and Associate Chair of Faculty and Academic Staff Development, Department of Biomedical Engineering, UW-Madison: “Biomechanics of the pulmonary vasculature in healthy and diseased states”

Oct. 13—Aashrith Saraswathibhatla, Graduate Student, Engineering Mechanics Program, Department of Engineering Physics, University of Wisconsin?Madison: “Force and Adhesion in the Cell Monolayer” and Aabhas Singh, Graduate Student, Engineering Mechanics Program, Department of Engineering Physics, University of Wisconsin?Madison (Read a summary of Aashrith’s talk.)

Oct. 20—No seminar, Homecoming and Engineers’ Day

Oct. 27—Professor Matt Allen, Associate Professor, Department of Engineering Physics, UW-Madison: “Challenges in Modeling Friction and Contact at Interfaces in Structural Dynamics”

Nov. 3—Professor John Eaton, Charles Lee Powell Foundation Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University (Midwest Mechanics Speaker)

Nov. 10—Professor Darryl Thelen, Harvey D. Spangler Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison: “Gauging force by tapping tendons” (Read a summary of Darryl’s talk.)

Nov. 24—No seminar, Thanksgiving

Dec. 1—Dr. Ronald Sabo, Research Materials Engineer, Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, Wisconsin: “Effect of Cellulose Nanomaterials on Polymer Structures and Properties”

Dec. 8—Vinay Damodaran, Graduate Student, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Wisconsin?Madison