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Engineering Materials and Mechanics Group (EM²G)

The Engineering Materials and Mechanics Group (EM2G) provides multi-disciplinary approaches to explore scientific understandings and innovate future engineering technologies. Our key aim is to develop fundamental understanding of the science behind interactive mechanisms in materials engineering in the areas of nanocomposites, graphene, functional materials, thin film coatings and high-entropy alloys.

The Engineering Materials and Mechanics Group provides multi-disciplinary approaches to explore excellent scientific understandings and innovate future engineering technologies. We work to promote advanced science and engineering applications through collaboration with other Northumbria research groups and our extensive international research network with external academic and industrial collaborators.

Our core practices include:

  • Advanced Materials (e.g., Multi-Functional, Nanocomposites, Lightweight Materials, etc)
  • Applied Mechanics
  • Functional (nano-)materials enabled intelligent system
  • Thin film materials and coatings
  • Micro-engineering and micro-electronics
  • Structure/Device/System development for future engineering in extreme environment
  • Design and optimisation of composite structures
  • Energy harvesters
  • Nonlinear dynamics and vibration of structures
  • Smart materials for wearable sensing and actuation application

Our extensive experiences in a wide range of scientific topics are supported by world-leading research infrastructure in materials, surfaces and micro-devices. We recently refurbished our rapid prototyping suite and bespoke laboratory research space, which now boasts specialist kit as follows:

  • A wet processing lab fully equipped with fume cupboards
  • Advanced optical characterisation platform consisting of Nikon multifunctional up-right microscopy
  • Ti-E epi-fluorescence microscope equipped with ultra-precision motorised stage and high-speed camera;
  • Bruker contour interferometer
  • High-spec microfluidic research platform (Fluigent MFCS-EZ) integrated with a probe station and a customised Nikon up-right microscopy State-of-the-art field-emission Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)
  • Dynamic Mechanical Analyser (DMA)
  • Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)
  • X-ray diffraction (XRD)
  • Nanoindenter
  • Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometer (SIMS)
  • Electrospinning equipment and the refurbishment of a
  • For theoretical/analytical work, we have a complete set of engineering software (Ansys, Abaqus, Matlab, Solidworks, Autocad, Catia, etc).

The group has established strong collaborations with world-leading researchers and industrial partners – e.g. Reece (materials), Palintest (manufacturing), INEX (engineering), Jinboma (manufacturing, China), Sabic (KSA) and has been actively engaged in research council funded activities, i.e. Special Interest Groups (SIGs) in the EPSRC UK Fluid network (e.g. UKFN, EP/N032861/1). We also collaborate in the Graphene Flagship scheme with Nanesa Srl (Materials, Italy), CRF FIAT (Manufacturing), NNT(Materials, Japan) for both academic and industrial engagements in a broad range of engagements in automotive, aerospace, energy, bio-engineering and healthcare.

Our academics are involved in international and national research committees and organizations, holding fellowships with Institute of Materials, Mining and Mineralogy, Royal Society of Chemistry, Institution of Mechanical Engineers as well as editorial board positions on leading international journals.


Martin BirkettMartin Birkett


Mechanical and Construction Engineering



a man wearing a suit and tie smiling at the cameraHamed Farokhi

Assistant Professor

Mechanical and Construction Engineering


This research group forms part of the Department of Mechanical and Construction Engineering.

Research from this group was submitted to REF 2021 under UoA 12: Engineering.

To view research papers emanating from this group, please click here to view Northumbria Research Link, our open access repository of research output from Northumbria University.


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