Institute of Materials Science & Engineering

The Institute of Materials Science & Engineering (IMSE) at Washington University in St. Louis offers a unique, interdisciplinary PhD in Materials Science & Engineering that crosses traditional departmental and school boundaries. The field of materials science and engineering focuses on the study, development and application of new materials with desirable properties, with the goal of enabling new products and superior performance regimes. Disciplines in the physical sciences (e.g., chemistry, physics) play a central role in developing the fundamental knowledge that is needed to design materials for a variety of engineering applications (e.g., mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, biomedical engineering). Building on training that spans from fundamental to applied sciences, materials scientists and engineers integrate this fundamental knowledge to develop new materials and match them with appropriate technological needs.

The IMSE is well positioned to address the needs of a student seeking a truly interdisciplinary experience. The IMSE brings together a diverse group of faculty from departments in Arts & Sciences, the McKelvey School of Engineering, and the School of Medicine. The IMSE also oversees shared research and instrument facilities, develops partnerships with industry and national laboratories, and facilitates outreach activities.

Current focused areas of research and advanced graduate education within the IMSE include the following:

  • Artificial intelligence in materials discovery and design
  • Biomedical, bio-derived, and bio-inspired materials
  • Materials for energy and environmental technologies
  • Quantum and photonic materials and devices