What is MPAD?MPAD is a state-of-the-art university-wide research center, specializing in research and development of high performance, lightweight engineering materials, processes, and products. MPAD has two focus areas - Advanced Composites and Metal Castings. The MPAD team provides education and training from concept-to-product development and value-added engineered solutions. MPAD is integrated with Alabama's economic development mission and educates next generation engineers and scientists in technologies for automotive, aerospace and missile defense, mass transit and heavy truck, energy, infrastructure, sporting and other areas of growth. Click on one of the images above to learn more about our primary focus areas.
MPAD Partners with Moldex3DUAB’s MPAD center and MSE department has collaborated with processing simulation software company Moldex3D. Moldex3D compression molding (CM) software will be used to teach classes and conduct research. In general, CM is a process in which a molten neat polymer or fiber filled polymer charge gets squeezed into a preheated mold cavity under pressure until the charge has cooled down and solidified. This process is a low-cost molding method due to its low tooling cost and high production volume. It is also suitable for prototyping and manufacturing production in various applications such as automotive, aerospace, energy, medical, consumer, electronics, defense, and more. CM can be used to produce parts with high fiber aspect ratio resulted from its low shear forces in preparing the charge and therefore high mechanical properties.
MPAD Center Expands in Lab Space and EquipmentThe MPAD Center continues to grow its influence in research and manufacturing, enhancing the services provided to industry partners and in collaborative research across disciplines. With an expansion to space and the addition of several equipment, the MPAD Center can now reach a much larger audience and the potential for future research is endless.
2015 Girls in Science & Engineering Day (GSED) at the MPAD Center
Every year UAB hosts Girls in Science & Engineering Day (GSED) and the university invites girls in 6th, 7th, and 8th grade from around the metro-Birmingham area to participate in a day filled with fun activities in science & engineering. This year the event was held Saturday, May 2nd and the MPAD Center was invited to host one of the engineering workshops. The day involves 3 workshops that are an hour and a half each and the groups rotate to different locations for each workshop. The workshop at the MPAD Center was comprehensive of Materials Engineering because each group was able to do activities in both the Composites Lab and the Metal Casting Lab that demonstrate and teach about different materials and basic concepts in each concentration of Materials Engineering.
ASNT Faculty Grant Awarded to UAB
The American Society for Nondestructive Testing (ASNT) annually awards ABET-accredited engineering programs with a financial incentive to revise their existing courses or develop new coursework to emphasize nondestructive testing and evaluation.
Ahmed Arabi Hassen, MSE Ph.D student, presides over the Central Alabama chapter of ASNT and his proposal, Development of Nondestructive Evaluation technologies to include training modules for the industry, will help advance efforts to strengthen the colloborations of UAB and the chapter, and to further nondestructive methodology through academia. Dr. Vaidya received this nomination as Ahmed's academic advisor and mentor, and is currently Chair of UAB's Department of Materials Science & Engineering and also Director of the UAB MPAD Center.
Proposals are reviewed for a number of criteria including:
- Potential contribution to NDT
- Impact on current curriculum
- Thoroughness of approach
- Documentation on number of students likely to be impacted
- Level of cost-sharing
- Qualification of faculty members
- Letter of support from departmental administrator
ASNT awards $10,000 to two recipients each year and thanks to Ahmed's committment and nomination, Dr. Vaidya will be one of two recipients for this year's award.
Meet Our Undergraduate Research AssistantsAt the end of the Fall semester, the Department of Materials Science and Engineering in conjunction with the MPAD Center hired undergraduate students to assist in ongoing research projects and to allow hands-on experience for undergraduates in all fields of engineering in solving various industry problems. This is the first semester we have implemented an application process for undergraduate student workers, and because of the limited number of available positions, selection was competitive. We are pleased to introduce our Spring undergraduate research assistants.
Brahma & Barfknecht Awarded at 2015 NSF Open House
The National Science Foundation (NSF) Science and Technology Open House is an annual event each January hosted by Tuskegee University and sponsored by the Alabama Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (ESPSCoR) funded by the NSF. This community outreach program is designed to provide doctoral-granting universities across the state an opportunity to meet and share research achievements with each other and with members of the community in an effort to encourage the pursual of federal research dollars within the state of Alabama.
2015 ASNT Travel Grant Award
Congratulations to Diana David!
MPAD Graduate student Diana David was recently hired by Steel Founder's Society of America (SFSA) located in Crystal Lake, Illinois. SFSA represent and support the steel casting industry in North America. They promote advancement of steel technology and development of new market applications for steel castings by facilitating research projects involving universities and foundries and providing opportunities for communication throughout the steel industry.
Diana is a Masters student in Materials Engineering here at UAB with a concentration in Metals Research. This past December she successfully defended her research thesis on microstructural analysis of aluminum high pressure die castings, and will return in May to officially graduate. Diana will be serving as the Research Manager at SFSA and will provide technical resources to SFSA members and oversee SFSA's research portfolio. We are very proud of Diana and wish her all the best on her new position with SFSA!
Siddhartha Brahma awarded at 2014 SPE-ACCE Conference
Ph.D. student Siddhartha Brahma placed 2nd at the 2014 Society for Plastics Engineers – Automotive Composites Conference and Expo (SPE-ACCE) student poster competition. Students are judged on a number of criteria ranging from the relevancy of their research to the methodology and quality of their results to the overall presentation and knowledge of the topic. Sid placed 2nd out of a total of 21 undergraduate/graduate students from universities across the U.S. and was awarded $500 from SPE. The SPE-ACCE is a leading conference in automotive composites and was attended by over 800 OEM/industry participants.
A job well done to Sid on all of his hard work and accomplishments!
MPAD Center Student Spotlight
The MPAD Center Student Spotlight honor has been awarded to Ph.D. student Dan Kaliberov (pictured left) and to undergraduate student Terry Hogan (pictured right).