Graduate Division

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Ph.D.

Section 1

Overview

The Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering is home to world-renowned researchers in:

  • Power and Propulsion
  • Microsystems and Nanomaterials
  • Mechanics of Solids, Structures and Materials
  • Fluid Mechanics and Aerodynamics
  • Energy and Environment
  • Dynamics, Controls and Robotics
  • Design and Manufacturing
  • Biomechanical Engineering

Our faculty have achieved top honors and distinctions from the National Academy of Engineering, Department of Defense, National Science Foundation, and Professional Societies. In addition to their research accomplishments, the faculty members are deeply dedicated to teaching and mentoring.

What Sets Us Apart?

The Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the University of California, Irvine is at the forefront of developing new knowledge and technologies for a number of industries including:

  • Transportation
  • Healthcare
  • Construction
  • Instrumentation
  • Robotics

We research and teach at the interface of ideas, where several disciplines such as physics, math, electronics, materials, computer science, and engineering intersect in the spry hands of broadly trained MAE@UCI engineers. We research in the fields of Nano, Bio, Energy, Propulsion, Controls, Design, and Mechanics.

Mechanical Engineering has become a more interdisciplinary field as machines have changed, bringing mechanical engineers into collaboration with engineers from other engineering disciplines as well as researchers working in pure science fields. Here is a glimpse at how we do it at MAE@UCI:

  • Our micro/nano research enables airbag, chip-scale gyroscope, disposable medical devices, stronger and lighter materials for transportation, and energy-efficient conversion devices, to name a few.   
  • We do bioimaging, bioinstrumentation and design, implantable prosthetics, biomaterials and tissue engineering, and biomechanics.
  • We focus on technologies for efficient and clean energy conversion and utilization, aiming to meet the challenge of rising energy demands and prices, while simultaneously studying the impact of technologies on climate and environment.
  • We are enriching the spectrum of models and tools for describing and predicting static and dynamic thermomechanical phenomena, including those in fluid mechanics, solid mechanics, nonlinear mechanics, computational mechanics, and structural mechanics.
  • We integrate a diverse array of topics, including mechanical design, manufacturing, electronics, materials, and biology. This allows us to invent novel actuator and sensor technology, biorobotics and bioinstrumentation, control of complex systems, precision instrumentation, and autonomous robotic vehicles.

Faculty and graduate students of MAE@UCI are inventing the future at the interface of ideas.  

Quick Facts

Program Type

Doctoral Program

Normative Time to Degree

5 years

Capstone Type

Dissertation

Accordion Section

Admissions Requirements

What documentation do I need to submit?

The materials needed for graduate application are listed in this site. Regarding the recommendation letters, we expect that at least two of the three required letters are written by academics (professors) who can provide an analytical evaluation of your scholarly performance and potential as a graduate student.
 
I want to pursue an M.S. and will likely continue on to a Ph.D., but I am not completely certain. Should I apply to the Ph.D. program?

If you have a genuine interest in doctoral studies, we recommend that you apply directly to the Ph.D. program.
 
What is the minimum GPA requirement?

For applicants to our M.S. program, we follow the campus criterion of a minimum GPA of 3.0 based on a 4.0 scale; however, because of the highly competitive nature of admissions, the cutoff can be considerably higher and is currently around 3.3/4.0.
 
What is the minimum GRE score?

There is no formal minimum GRE score. However, we are looking for a range in the quantitative area of 165-170.
 
What is the minimum TOEFL score? Is the requirement to be a Teaching Assistant different?

The campus requirement for minimum TOEFL is 80 on the internet based test (IBT) and at least 550 on the paper-based test (PBT). However, our expectation is a TOEFL score of at least 95. In order to establish eligibility for appointment as a UCI Teaching Assistant (TA), international students who are not citizens of countries where English is either the primary or dominant language are required to pass an oral English proficiency exam approved by the UCI campus. Students can fulfill this requirement by passing one of the following exams: TSE, TOEFL (must have 26 or higher in Speaking portion), SPEAK, or TOEP. More information on the English Proficiency requirement is available here.

Financial Support

The Department has several sources of financial support for highly qualified students. These include fellowships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships.

In addition, a large number of external competitive fellowships/awards are available for students meeting the criteria of the sponsoring organization. Graduate students are urged to be proactive in seeking these sources of support, including:

Tuition & Fees

Graduate/Credential Student Fees 2018-19

  Fall 2018 Winter 2019 Spring 2019 Annual
Student Services Fee 376.00 376.00 376.00 1,128.00
Tuition 3,814.00 3,814.00 3,814.00 11,442.00
Assoc. Grad Students Fee 9.00 9.00 9.00 27.00
Student Center Fee 137.88 137.88 137.87 413.63
Bren Events Center Fee 23.00 23.00 23.00 69.00
Recreation Center Fee 88.00 88.00 88.00 264.00
eTech Fee * 60.00 60.00 60.00 180.00
Document Fee † 80.00 0.00 0.00 80.00
Student Health Insurance 1,348.00 1,347.00 1,347.00 4,042.00
Total California Resident $5,795.88 $5,794.88 $5,794.87 $17,385.63
Nonresident Supplemental Tuition 5,034.00 5,034.00 5,034.00 15,102.00
Total Nonresident $10,829.88 $10,828.88 $10,828.87 $32,487.63

Posted 10 August 2018 at http://reg.uci.edu/fees/2018-2019/graduate.html

The tuition, fees, and charges posted to your billing statement or account are estimates based on currently approved amounts. These figures may not be final. Actual tuition, fees, and charges are subject to change by the Regents of the University of California and could be affected by increases or reductions in State funding, or other developments. Accordingly, final approved levels (and thus your final balance due) may differ from the amounts shown.

The non-refundable eTech Fee is required of all students and is used to support the maintenance and improvement of existing education technology, and new services and capabilities. The eTech fee is listed separately as the charged amount varies based on the amount of undergraduate units the student is enrolled in and is assessed later in the term than the other fees listed. The fee is $4 per unit of undergraduate lecture course, up to a maximum amount of $60 (or 15 units) per quarter. It will be assessed after the third week of instruction. The $60 eTech Fee included on this chart reflects the maximum possible fee.

† The Document Fee provides lifetime access to official transcripts and academic verifications without a fee for in-person pickup or delivery by USPS. In addition, there is no fee for mailing the initial diploma. Effective Fall 2018, new undergraduate, professional, and graduate students are assessed the one-time document fee. Eligible students are able to use financial aid to cover the Document Fee.

Core Faculty

Satya N. Atluri, ScD Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Professor Emeritus of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


James E. Bobrow, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, Professor Emeritus of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (robotics, applied nonlinear control, optimization methods)


Jacob Brouwer, Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Civil and Environmental Engineering (high-temperature electrochemical dynamics, fuel cells, renewable and sustainable energy)


Donald Dabdub, Ph.D. California Institute of Technology, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Civil and Environmental Engineering (mathematical modeling of urban and global air pollution, dynamics of atmospheric aerosols, secondary organic aerosols, impact of energy generation on air quality, chemical reactions at gas-liquid interfaces)


Derek Dunn-Rankin, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, Department Chair and Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Civil and Environmental Engineering; Environmental Health Sciences (combustion, optical particle sizing, particle aero-dynamics, laser diagnostics and spectroscopy)


Said E. Elghobashi, Ph.D. University of London, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (direct numerical simulation of turbulent, chemically reacting and dispersed two-phase flows)


Manuel Gamero-Castaño, Ph.D. Yale University, Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (electric propulsion, electrospray, atomization, aerosol diagnostics)


Tryphon Georgiou, Ph.D. University of Florida, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (control theory, systems engineering, statistical signal processing, applied mathematics)


Faryar Jabbari, Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (robust and nonlinear control theory, adaptive parameter identification)


Solmaz S. Kia, Ph.D. University of California, Irvine, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (distributed control and optimization of multi-agent networked systems))


John C. Larue, Ph.D. University of California, San Diego, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (fluid mechanics, micro-electrical-mechanical systems (MEMS), turbulence, heat transfer, instrumentation)


Jaeho Lee, Ph.D. Stanford University, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (nanofabrication and thermoelectric energy conversion)


Feng Liu, Ph.D. Princeton University, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (computational fluid dynamics and combustion, aerodynamics, aeroelasticity, propulsion, turbomachinery aerodynamics and aeromechanics)


Marc J. Madou, Ph.D. Ghent University, UCI Chancellor's Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Biomedical Engineering; Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (fundamental aspects of micro/nano-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS), biosensors, nanofluidics, biomimetics)


J. Michael McCarthy, Ph.D. Stanford University, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (machine design and kinematic synthesis of spatial mechanisms and robots)


Kenneth D. Mease, Ph.D. University of Southern California, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (flight guidance and control, nonlinear dynamical systems)
Dimitri Papamoschou, Ph.D. California Institute of Technology, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (compressible mixing and turbulence, jet noise reduction, diagnostics for compressible flow, acoustics in moving media)


Roger H. Rangel, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (fluid dynamics and heat transfer of multiphase systems including spray combustion, atomization and metal spray solidification, applied mathematics and computational methods)


David J. Reinkensmeyer, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology; Biomedical Engineering; Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (robotics, mechatronics, biomedical engineering, rehabilitation, biomechanics, neural control of movement)


Timothy Rupert, Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (mechanical behavior, nanomaterials, structure property relationships, microstructural stability, grain boundaries and interfaces, materials characterization)


G. Scott Samuelsen, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, Director of Advanced Power and Energy Program, Research Professor and Professor Emeritus of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Civil and Environmental Engineering (energy, fuel cells, hydrogen economy, propulsion, combustion and environmental conflict, turbulent transport in complex flows, spray physics, NOx and soot formation, laser diagnostics and experimental methods, application of engineering science to practical propulsion and stationary systems, environmental ethics)


William E. Schmitendorf, Ph.D. Purdue University, Professor Emeritus of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Andrei M. Shkel, Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Biomedical Engineering; Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (design and advanced control of micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS), precision micro-sensors and actuators for telecommunication and information technologies, MEMS-based health monitoring systems, disposable diagnostic devices, prosthetic implants)


Athanasios Sideris, Ph.D. University of Southern California, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (robust and optimal control theory and design, neural networks, learning systems and algorithms)


William A. Sirignano, Ph.D. Princeton University, Henry Samueli Endowed Chair in Engineering and Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (combustion theory and computational methods, multiphase flows, high-speed turbulent reacting flows, flame spread, microgravity combustion, miniature combustors, fluid dynamics, applied mathematics)


Haithem Taha, Ph.D. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (dynamics and control, aerodynamic modeling, optimization applications)


Lorenzo Valdevit, Ph.D. Princeton University, Director of the Institute for Design and Manufacturing Innovation (IDMI) and Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (multifunctional sandwich structures, thermal protection systems, morphing structures, active materials, MEMS, electronic packaging, cell mechanics)


Mark Walter, Ph.D. California Institute of Technology, Lecturer with Security of Employment of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (mechanics of materials using advanced experimental and numerical techniques to investigate the initiation and propagation of damage on micro to macro size scales; response of multifunctional materials in simulated application environments; building energy efficiency)


Yun Wang, Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University, Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (fuel cells, computational modeling, thermo-fluidics, two-phase flows, electrochemistry, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), turbulent combustion)


Gregory N. Washington, Ph.D. North Carolina State University at Raleigh, Stacy Nicholas Dean of The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (dynamic systems: modeling and control, design and control of mechanically actuated antennas, advanced control of machine tools, design and control of Hybrid Electric Vehicles, structural position, vibration control with smart materials)


Yoon Jin Won, Ph.D. Stanford University, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Center for Educational Partnerships (multi-scale structures for thermal and energy applications, in particular fabrication, characterization, and integration of structured materials)

Academic Data

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Career Outcomes

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