Materials play a major role in augmenting concerns about security in the homeland and on the battle field. From X-ray machines and metal detectors to safety glasses, and advanced composites for airframes or soft and hard armor for protection of personnel and vehicles to structural barricades for buildings, material scientists are constantly researching and developing new materials for these applications. This is a major area of research being pursued by MSE faculty. It involves advancing the fundamental understanding of the materials response under extreme conditions of high stress, strain, and strain rate; learning lessons from nature to design materials for various types of diagnostic devices, sensors, and protection systems; fabrication of soft and hard light-weight armor materials; as well as developing batteries and other powering sources for various portable devices.
The faculty listed below, have identified their primary research in the area of Security as the grand challenge being addressed in their work.