The Department of Materials Science and Engineering traces its history back to the founding of MIT in 1865. Over these years, its central function has been the education of students by providing them with the opportunity to conduct independent and creative research at the forefront of materials science and engineering. Today the Department is the largest of its kind in the United States, and it is clearly the leader in many areas of materials education and research. The Department shares in creating the tradition of excellence for which MIT is known.

The Department's strong record of achievement is solidly based on its continuing record of pioneering advances in engineering sciences and technologies, its ability to relate new developments and advances to engineering practice, its success in incorporating these advances into teaching and research programs, and its close relationship with industry.

In advancing the frontiers of knowledge, the Department draws upon faculty and students with many diverse backgrounds. There are few fields of science or engineering that are not concerned in some way with materials. Indeed, the need for materials is as pervasive in our lives as is the need for energy. It has been estimated that the work of one in three engineers is directly related to materials, while over half of all engineers have at least an indirect concern for the properties of materials.

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Recent Submissions

  • 3.012 Fundamentals of Materials Science, Fall 2003 

    Marzari, Nicola; Irvine, Darrell J.; Wuensch, Bernhardt J. (2003-12)
    This subject describes the fundamentals of bonding, energetics, and structure that underpin materials science. From electrons to silicon to DNA: the role of electronic bonding in determining the energy, structure, and ...
  • 6.152J / 3.155J Microelectronics Processing Technology, Fall 2003 

    Schmidt, Martin A.; O'Handley, Robert C., 1942-; Ruff, Susan (2003-12)
    Introduces the theory and technology of integrated-circuit fabrication. Lectures and laboratory sessions on basic processing techniques such as diffusion, oxidation, epitaxy, photolithography, chemical vapor deposition, ...
  • 3.A24 Freshman Seminar: The Engineering of Birds, Fall 2004 

    Gibson, Lorna J. (2004-12)
    Why are things in nature shaped the way they are? How do birds fly? Why do bird nests look the way they do? How do woodpeckers peck? These are the types of questions Dr. Lorna Gibson's freshman seminar at MIT has been ...

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