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1st Southern California Mechanics Workshop

Dear all, 

Qiming Wang (USC), Lihua Jin (UCLA) and myself (UCSD) will organize 1st southern california mechanics workshop. Please see the flyer attached. 

All the best, 


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Opening of assistant professor in computation mechanics, UCSD

RECRUITMENT PERIODOpen date: October 22nd, 2018Next review date: January 4th, 2019
Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.Final date: June 28th, 2019
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.DESCRIPTION

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Abstract submission to Mechanics of Soft Materials (ASME IMECE)

Dear colleagues,

This is a gentle reminder that abstracts are due on July 23rd for presentation only.  Please consider submitting abstracts to our topic on the Mechanics of Soft Materials (Track 12-1) one of the most active areas in the ASME!  Some of our planned sessions are:

12-1 Mechanics of Soft Materials

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Journal club for January 2018: Recent advances in liquid crystal elastomer

Recent advances in liquid crystal elastomer

Zhijian Wang, Shengqiang Cai

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Materials Science and Engineering Program


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CALL FOR ABSTRACT: SES Symposium C-4: Mechanical Characterization of Soft Materials: Experiments and Modeling

Soft materials are ubiquitous in nature, from biopolymers, cells, and tissues to organs. In recent years, soft materials have been intensively explored in different engineering applications, ranging from haptic devices to soft robotics, from flexible electronics to biomimetic systems. Fundamental studies of the deformation mechanisms of soft materials and optimal designs in different applications urgently need robust methods for material characterization.

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Dear all, 

The 6th interntional conference on Mechanics of Biomaterials and Tissues will be in Hawaii. Please see the poster in the attachment. The dealine for submitting the abstract will be extended. 



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Diffusion-induced wrinkling instability in a circular poroelastic plate

A poroelastic material can imbibe solvent and swell. When the material swells inhomogeneously or

swells under external constraints, stresses can develop inside the material. The stresses can trigger

mechanical instabilities in the material or even break the material, which have been often observed

in experiments. In this paper, we study the wrinkling instability of a circular poroelastic plate, in

the process of solvent molecules migrating into the plate from the edge. The critical conditions for

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wet adhesion between two soft layers

Two solids can adhere to each other in the presence of a liquid bridge between them, which is called wet adhesion. When the solid is soft, the liquid bridge can cause deformation in the material, and in turn, the deformation may have dramatic effects on the wet adhesion. To investigate the effect, in this article, we calculate the deformation in two soft layers with different separations and connected by a liquid bridge. We illustrate the effect of deformation in the soft layers on the adhesive force.

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Drying-induced cavitation in a constrained hydrogel

Cavitation can be often observed in soft materials. Most previous studies were focused on cavitation in an elastomer, which is under different mechanical loadings. In this paper, we investigate cavitation in a constrained hydrogel induced by drying. With taking account of surface tension and chemo-mechanics of gels, we calculate the free energy of the system as a function of cavity size. The free energy landscape shows double-well structure, analogous to first-order phase transition.  Above the critical humidity, a cavity inside the gel is tiny.

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Faculty position in the department of mechanical and aerospace engineering at UCSD

The Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering (MAE, at the Jacobs School of Engineering (JSOE) at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the Assistant/Associate/Full Professor rank with research focus on experimental and/or computational mechanics of advanced materials under extreme conditions.

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Symposium on New Developments in Defect Mechanics - a unique intellectual event

Faculty from Caltech, UC Berkeley , University of Michigan, Georgia Tech, Brown University, University of Calgary, University of Pennsylvania, UCLA, Johns Hopkins University, Imperial College, London, and UCSD and researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories congregated to UCSD  on January 18-19, 2014 to attend the third in a series of symposia on Multiscale Dislocation Dynamics and to honor Professor Michael Ortiz  on his 60th birthday. Faculty also brought their graduate students and postdocs to engage in such a powerful intellectual activity.

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Post doc position

I have a postdoc position in the dept. of MAE in UCSD, starting from Feb. 2013.

The research will be on the mechanics of soft materials and biomaterials, the design and fabrication of soft active structures and

mechanics of energy materials. 

People with experimental background on experimental mechanics, materials fabrication and bioengineering is perferred. 

Please send CV with reaserach experience and publications to the email:, if you have interest.  

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Poroelasticity of a covalently crosslinked alginate hydrogel under compression

This paper studies the poroelastic behavior of an alginate hydrogel by a combination of theory and experiment. The gel—covalently crosslinked, submerged in water and fully swollen—is suddenly compressed between two parallel plates. The gap between the plates is held constant subsequently, and the force on the plate relaxes while water in the gel migrates. This experiment is analyzed by using the theory of linear poroelasticity.

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Dynamic fracture mechanics

Dynamic fracture mechanics is written by a very well known professro-L B Freund. Honestly, I have only read a small part of the book. However, I recommend this book because after reading this book, you can learn many things which haven't be touched in the class, as stated by Zhigang in the beginning of the class.

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A theory of constrained swelling of a pH-sensitive hydrogel

Many engineering devices and natural phenomena involve gels that swell under the constraint of hard materials. The constraint causes a field of stress in a gel, and often makes the swelling inhomogeneous even when the gel reaches a state of equilibrium. To analyze inhomogeneous swelling of a pH-sensitive gel, we implement a finite element method in the commercial software ABAQUS.  The program is attached here.  Contact Shenqiang Cai ( for a description of the program.

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Poroelasticity and diffusion in elastic solids

These are slides of poroelasticity and diffusion in elastic solids for final presentation based on ES241 notes.

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University lecturership in Engineering Science in Oxford

Here is a position for University lecturership in Engineering Science(Solid or Structural Mechanics)in association with a Tutorial fellowshiip at Pembroke College. 

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A University Lectureship in Solid Mechanics available in the Engineering Science Department at Oxford

Here is a Lectureship in Solid Mechanics available in the Engineering Science Department at Oxford posted by Prof.Alan Cocks.

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ES 240 Final Project

Attachment is my small final project. My name is Shengqiang Cai.


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