Dr. Matthew Bryant

Dr. Matthew Bryant

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Phone: 919-515-5298
Instructor Website

MAE 538 Smart Structures and Materials

3 Credit Hours

An application-oriented introduction to smart structures and materials with examples from mechanical, aerospace and biomedical engineering. Experimentally observed phenomena, micromechanisms, and models for material behavior. Team work developing simulation tools for typical applications. Validating results experimentally using PC-based data acquisition systems.


Undergraduate courses in solid mechanics (NC State MAE 214 or equivalent) and vibrations / dynamics of machines (NC State MAE 315 / MAE 361 or equivalent).

Course Objectives

  • Outcome 1: Students will understand the coupling properties and underlying physical phenomena of different active materials.
  • Outcome 2: Students will have the foundation to model and analyze engineering devices and systems that incorporate smart materials under static and dynamic conditions.
  • Outcome 3: Students will be introduced to applications of active materials in sensing, actuation, control, and energy harvesting.

Course Requirements

Homework 30%
Exam 1 25%
Exam 2 25%
Project 20%


Recommended: “Engineering Analysis of Smart Material Systems” by Donald J. Leo, 2007.

Computer and Software Requirements

Please review minimum computer specifications recommended by NC State University and Engineering Online.

Software: Access and proficiency with standard engineering software including MATLAB and Excel are required.  These are accessible through the NC State Virtual Computing Lab.

Updated: 11/01/2022