THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA GRADUATE CATALOG
Table of Contents > College of Engineering

11.6.7  DEPARTMENT OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING (ME)
Chair: Professor K. Clark Midkiff, Office: 165 B Hardaway Hall
 
The department offers programs leading to the master of science in mechanical engineering degree and the doctor of philosophy in the area of mechanical engineering.
 
Two basic plans are available for earning an MS degree, one requiring a thesis (Plan I) and one not requiring a thesis (Plan II). During the first semester in residence, a student enrolled in any graduate program should form a supervisory committee and, in counsel with an advisor, submit a program of courses for the degree. Forms and information for this purpose can be obtained in the departmental office.
 
Research

The department has active research programs in automotive engineering, acoustics, biomedical engineering, combustion, computational modeling and simulation, IC engines, control systems, energy systems, energy conservation, manufacturing, propulsion and space exploration, vibrations, and vehicle dynamics. To support research, the department maintains well-equipped laboratories for engines, computer-aided automation, numerical modeling, vibro-acoustics and sound quality, metrology and precision engineering, combustion, and propulsion and space exploration. The department also maintains a modularized area capable of supporting many separate projects, as well as a student machine shop. Students have easy access to modern computer facilities, including a departmental computer room.

 

 

Admission Requirements
Descriptions of the Graduate School Admission Criteria and the College of Engineering General Admission requirements are in earlier sections of this catalog.

 

A master's degree applicant for a mechanical engineering program should normally have a baccalaureate degree in mechanical engineering from an ABET-accredited curriculum or a recognized international university. Applicants in related areas such as science and mathematics are encouraged; however, prerequisite undergraduate courses will be required that will not apply for graduate credit.
 
Admission to the PhD program usually requires completion of a masterís degree; however, exceptionally qualified applicants may be admitted directly to the PhD program from the bachelorís degree.
 
No GRE score is required if the applicant is a student in the College of Engineering at The University of Alabama who is participating in, or has participated in, the University Scholars program. The GMAT is accepted in lieu of the GRE for admission to any of the Collegeís dual degree programs with the MBA if the applicant has a bachelorís degree in engineering or computer science from an ABET/EAC or ABET/CAC accredited program with a GPA of at least a 3.0. International students generally must submit TOEFL or equivalent scores in English language proficiency.

 

 

Degree Requirements

Graduate School Degree Requirements and College of Engineering MS and PhD degree requirements are detailed in earlier sections of this catalog. Also refer to the online Graduate Handbook on the departmental homepage.


Master's Degree Requirements
Plan I. All students on teaching or research assistantships in the department are expected to pursue the Plan I option. The following are the departmentís requirements for the Plan I Masterís degree:

  • A minimum of 24 semester hours of approved courses (excluding ME 599) that together satisfy all other course requirements for the degree

  • A minimum of 12 semester hours in a major area, of which 3 hours may be in a closely related supporting area; at least 12 of the major hours must be at the 500 and/or 600 level

  • A minimum of 6 semester hours of mathematics taken in the Department of Mathematics or the College of Engineering

  • An approved thesis and a minimum of 6 semester hours of ME 599.

Plan II. The following are the department's requirements for the Plan II Master's degree:

  • minimum of 30 semester hours of approved courses that together satisfy all other course requirements for the degree

  • A minimum of 18 semester hours in a major area at or above the 500 level, of which 6 hours may be in closely related supporting areas

  • A minimum of 6 semester hours of mathematics taken in the Department of Mathematics or the College of Engineering

  • A comprehensive exam.

Doctor of Philosophy.  The following are the department's requirements for the PhD degree:

  • A minimum of 48 semester hours (excluding ME 699) of approved courses that together satisfy all other course requirements for the degree

  • A minimum of 24 semester hours of coursework in the major technical area, of which 9 hours may be in closely related supporting areas

  • A minimum of 12 semester hours in any minor technical areas included in the student's program of study

  • A comprehensive exam

  • An approved dissertation and a minimum of 24 semester hours of ME 699.

Early in the graduate program, each student confers with a faculty adviser to select courses, discuss when and by which method the doctoral residency requirement will be completed, discuss research interests, and so forth.  Then a Plan of Study is prepared and submitted to the Graduate School.  The PhD Plan of Study is available at the Graduate School website.  All doctoral students must have a completed Plan of Study approved by the Graduate School no later than the semester during which the student will complete 30 semester hours of UA and/or transfer credit for the doctoral degree.  Otherwise, a "hold" may be placed on future registration. 

If later there are changes in the Plan of Study, the student simply submits an amended PhD Plan of Study to the Graduate School at the time that the form for Admission to Candidacy for Doctoral Degree is submitted. A department-approved Admission to Candidacy for the Doctoral Degree is submitted to the Graduate School as soon as possible after passing the comprehensive (preliminary) examination. 

 

See the online Graduate Catalog (Sec. 4.11.3) for details on Plan of Study, Admission to Candidacy, and all other Degree Requirements.

 

 

Course Descriptions

ME 500 Intermediate Fluid Mechanics. Three hours. Same as AEM 500.

Prerequisites: MATH 238, ME 215, and AEM 311.
Development and use of the integral and differential forms of the equations of continuity, momentum, and energy with ideal fluids and compressible fluids. Advanced topics in fluid mechanics, including potential flow, boundary layer flow, compressible flow, and open channel flow.

ME 501 Mechanical Engineering Analysis I. Three hours.
Prerequisites: ME 309, ME 349, and ME 372.
Analysis of mechanical engineering systems; presentations and application of advanced analysis techniques for continuous and discrete dynamic systems.

ME 502 Transport Phenomena. Three hours.
Prerequisites: ME 215 and AEM 311.
Steady and transient mass; energy and momentum transport in ideal and real substances.

ME 503 Intermediate Gas Dynamics. Three hours. Same as AEM 503.
Prerequisites: ME 215 and AEM 311.
Basic equations and concepts of compressible flow; shock and expansion waves; and development of the generalized one-dimensional equations and solution of these equations for various types of flow, using computer software.

ME 506 Foundations of Thermal Power Generation. Three hours.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Not open to students who have taken ME 406.
Thermal power systems; components, process analysis and modeling, fuels, combustion, environmental aspects, and availability analysis in steam and gas turbine plants. Examination of recent trends such as cogeneration and combined cycles.

ME 509 Intermediate Heat Transfer. Three hours. Prerequisites: ME 309 and AEM 311.
Intermediate treatment of conduction, convection, and radiation heat transfer.

ME 516 Foundations of Energy Conservation and Management. Three hours.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Not open to students who have taken ME 416.
Analysis and management of energy use in residential, commercial, and industrial applications, including lighting, heating and cooling, controls, and energy management systems. Topics include economics, auditing, energy management, and alternative energy sources.

ME 518 Principles of Combustion I. Three hours.
Combustion thermodynamics, flame temperature and equilibrium compositions, ignition processes, detonation and deflagration, diffusion flames, and similitude; assigned papers.

 

ME 522 Reliability, Maintainability, and Total Productive Maintenance. Three hours.

Prerequisites: GES 255 or ME 349 or Instructor Consent. Not open to students with credit for ME 421.

Measures and methods of reliability engineering, maintainability engineering, and total productive maintenance as used in the systems design process.
 

ME 525 Statistical Quality Control. Three hours.

Prerequisites: GES 255, or GES 400/500, or consent of instructor. Not open to students who earned credit in ME 425.

Use of statistical tools and techniques in control of quality of manufactured products.  Shewhart control charts; advanced control charts; capability analysis; single, double, and multiple sampling inspection plans.

 

ME 526 Design and Analysis of Experiments. Three hours.

Prerequisites: GES 255, OR GES 400/500, or consent of instructor.  Not open to students who have earned credit in ME 426.

Design or experiments and application of analysis of variance, regression analysis, and related statistical methods. 

 

ME 530 Artificial Intelligence in Manufacturing. Three hours.

Prerequisite: GES 255 or ME 349 or Instructor Consent.

The course covers the basic concepts of fuzzy set theory, fuzzy logic, and approximate reasoning. Relationships among fuzzy set theory, probability theory, and possibility theory are discussed. Applications of fuzzy set theory in manufacturing systems are outlined.


ME 541 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering. Three hours.
Prerequisites: MATH 238, PH 106, and either AEM 201 or AEM 361.
Introduction to the relationship between engineering and medicine. Modeling musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems. Review of medical devices such as non-invasive imaging devices, biopotential electrodes and amplifiers, and assistive technology.

ME 550 Advanced Mechanical Design. Three hours.
Constitutive relationships, Castigliano's method, fatigue, stochastic relationships, time-dependent properties, and other advanced topics.

 

ME 561 Techniques in Experimental Research. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 360.
Design of experimental research systems; study of instrumentation, transducers, and related electronic components; data acquisition, error analysis, experiment planning, and proposal writing.

ME 562 Intermediate Dynamics. Three hours. Same as AEM 562.
Prerequisites: MATH 238 and AEM 264, or permission of the instructor.
Dynamics of systems in moving coordinate frames; Lagrangian formulation and Hamilton 's principle; stability and perturbation concepts for rigid body motion; motion of systems of rigid bodies in three dimensions.

 

ME 564 System Simulation.  Three hours.

Prerequisites: ME 203 and GES 132, or consent of instructor. 

Co-requisite:  GES 257 or GES 400/500, Not open to students who have credit for ME 464.

Simulation methodology, emphasizing discrete, computer-simulation modeling. 

 

ME 566 Manufacturing Systems Design. Three hours.

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.  Not open to students who have credit for ME 466. 

Investigation of design issues and approaches for the analysis and design of manufacturing systems. 

 

ME 569 Production Planning and Control. Three hours.

Prerequisites:  GES 255 or GES 400/500 and GES 501.  Not open to students with credit for ME 469.

Forecasting and estimation; aggregate planning; charts and network models; resource allocation; inventory control; sequencing and scheduling; dispatching; flow control; bills of materials; and requirements planning. 

ME 570 Mechanical Vibrations. Three hours. Same as AEM 570.
Prerequisites: ME 372 and AEM 250.
Formulation and solution of free and forced vibration iscussed.
problems with single and multiple DOFs. Both modal and frequency response techniques are d
 

ME 571 Fundamentals of Acoustics. Three hours. Same as AEM 571.
Prerequisites: MATH 238, PH 106, and either ECE 320 or ECE 225.
Fundamental physical principles underlying wave propagation and resonance in mechanical systems. Introduces applications and provides experience in acoustic and audio measurements

and the associated instrumentation.
 

ME 577 Advanced Linear Control. Three hours. Same as AEM 577.
Prerequisite: ME 475 or permission of the instructor.
Modern techniques for the analysis and design of linear control systems. Matrix formulation; multivariable control systems; state-variable concepts; discrete-time systems; optimization; and statistical design methods.

 

ME 583 Computer-Aided Manufacturing. Three hours.

Prerequisites: DR 133 and ME 383

Introduction and application of several technologies used in computer-aided design/manufacturing, including computer-aided design, solid modeling, rapid prototyping, geometric dimensioning and tolerancing, machining process optimization, NC programming CNC machines, software-based product and process design in machining. 


ME 591 Special Problems (Area). Variable credit.
Credit awarded is based on the amount of work undertaken.

ME 594 Special Project. Two to six hours.
Planning, executing, and presenting results of an individual project involving a research design, analysis, or similar undertaking.

ME 598 Research Not Related to Thesis. Variable credit.

ME 599 Master's Thesis Research. One to six hours.

ME 605 Classical Thermodynamics. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 215.
Classical macroscopic thermodynamic analysis of systems, pure substances, mixtures, and reacting systems.

ME 607 Conduction Heat Transfer. Three hours.
Prerequisite: AEM 309 or equivalent.
Transient, multidimensional heat conduction in various geometries, and the mathematical and numerical means to analyze them.

ME 609 Convection Heat Transfer. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 309 or equivalent.
Laminar and turbulent internal and external flow, natural convection, and the mathematical and numerical means to analyze them.

ME 611 Finite-Element Analysis of Convective Heat Transfer.
Three hours.
Prerequisites: ME 309, AEM 311, and ME 349; or permission of the instructor.
Introduction to finite-element theory; Galerkin method of weighted residuals; shape functions; isoparametric elements; finite-element convective-diffusion equation; upwind methods; turbulence modeling; and utilization of commercial finite-element codes for analysis of convective heat transfer.

ME 618 Principles of Combustion II. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 518.
Parameters of confined combustion; evaporation of fuel, velocity of flames, detonation, and chamber design; dynamic effects; and measuring techniques. Assigned papers.

ME 621 Boundary Layer Theory I. Three hours. Same as AEM 621.
Development of basic boundary layer equations and concepts. Classical incompressible solutions for laminar boundary layer, approximate solutions, and concepts of turbulence.

ME 629 Radiation Heat Transfer. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 309.
Physical laws of thermal radiation; implications of entropy and probability; view factors; geometrical and spectral characteristics; and absorbing-scattering media.

ME 662 Advanced Dynamics. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 562.
Stability of autonomous and non-autonomous dynamical systems; Hamilton mechanics and canonical systems; analytical solution applying perturbation techniques; and analysis of dynamic behavior using geometric theory.

 

ME 677 Optimal Control. Three hours.
Prerequisite: ME 577.
Optimal control of dynamic processes; calculus of variations; Hamilton-Jacobi Theory; Pontryaginís maximum principle; dynamic programming.

ME 678 Advanced Topics in Control. Three hours.
Advanced topics in nonlinear, discrete-time, optimal, and learning systems.


ME 691:692 Special Problems (Area). Variable credit. Credit awarded is based on the amount of work undertaken.

ME 693 Selected Topics (Area). One to three hours.
Topics of current research in dynamics and controls, solid mechanics and structures, or thermal/fluid sciences; applications to mechanical engineering.

ME 694 Special Project. Two to six hours.
Planning, executing, and presenting results of an individual project involving a research design, analysis, or similar undertaking.

ME 698 Research Not Related to Dissertation. One to six hours.

ME 699 Doctoral Dissertation Research. Three to twelve hours.

 


THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA GRADUATE CATALOG

:: TABLE OF CONTENTS

The Graduate School | UA Catalogs | Graduate Publications | Contact