MADM with Applications in Material Selection and Optimal Design

Photo of human powered aircraft being pedaled in flight.

Human-powered aircraft, such as the NASA/MIT Daedalus 88 pictured above, present significant materials selection challenges. In his class project, student John Decker Ringo looked at materials selection techniques for the wing spar of a new human-powered aircraft design. (Photo by Beasley. Courtesy of NASA.)


MIT Course Number


As Taught In

January IAP 2007



Cite This Course

Course Description

Course Highlights

This course features a list of book and article readings, a take-home exam, and examples of student projects.

Course Description

This course begins with a comparative review of conventional and advanced multiple attribute decision making (MADM) models in engineering practice. Next, a new application of particular MADM models in reliable material selection of sensitive structural components as well as a multi-criteria Taguchi optimization method is discussed. Other specific topics include dealing with uncertainties in material properties, incommensurability in decision-makers opinions for the same design, objective ways of weighting performance indices, rank stability analysis, compensations and non-compensations.

This course is offered during the Independent Activities Period (IAP), which is a special 4-week term at MIT that runs from the first week of January until the end of the month.

Related Content

Abbas Milani. 2.994 MADM with Applications in Material Selection and Optimal Design, January IAP 2007. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare), (Accessed). License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA

For more information about using these materials and the Creative Commons license, see our Terms of Use.