This class deals with the stresses, strains and displacements of near-stationary structures subjected to applied loads. This is a traditional field in engineering education, and is taught in almost all mechanical and civil engineering curricula. 3.11 differs from most of these traditional subjects, however, because it is part of a Materials Science and Engineering curriculum.

Materials students need to learn the basics of solid mechanics just as the structural engineers do, but within the context of processing-structure-properties-performance that characterizes MSE. The curricular syllabus can be given simply as a listing of the modules making up this web package. They are arranged in an order that works well for teaching in a single term, though instructors will have to ration the time spent on each to avoid running out of time at the end of the term. It is certainly possible to omit certain topics altogether, depending on the individual subject goals and the preparation level of the students.

List of Topics/Modules

Tensile Response of Materials

  1. Introduction to Elastic Response
  2. Atomistics of Elasticity
  3. Introduction to Composites
  4. Stress-Strain Curves

Simple Tensile and Shear Structures

  1. Trusses
  2. Pressure Vessels
  3. Shear and Torsion

General Concepts of Stress and Strain

  1. Kinematics
  2. Equilibrium
  3. Tensor Transformations
  4. Constitutive Relations


  1. Shear and Bending Moment Diagrams
  2. Stresses in Beams
  3. Beam Displacements
  4. Laminated Composite Plates

General Stress Analysis

  1. Closed-Form Solutions
  2. Experimental Solutions
  3. Finite Element Analysis
  4. Linear Viscoelasticity

Yield and Fracture

  1. Yield and Plastic Flow
  2. Dislocation Basis of Yield and Creep
  3. Statistics of Fracture
  4. Introduction to Fracture Mechanics
  5. Fatigue


  1. Material Properties
  2. List of Symbols
  3. Unit Conversion Factors


  1. Mohr’s circle (Java® applet)
  2. strs3d - Stress Transformations
  3. plate - Laminated Plates

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Course Info

Learning Resource Types

laptop_windows Simulations
menu_book Online Textbook
assignment Problem Sets