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NSF - Mechanics of Materials and Structures

Dear colleagues,

There have been two changes at NSF that do affect the imechanica community. I would like to bring these to your attention.

1) The Mechanics of Materials program is now the Mechanics of Materials and Structures program. This change brings more emphasis to what our community is doing anyways and strengthens the profile within NSF, and also creates new opportunities for the community. The new program synopsis is below (also posted at

2) NSF has released a new Grant Proposal Guide. All proposals for the Feb. 2015 submission window onward have to conform with the rules established by this document. The document is available at

Thomas Siegmund

Program Director/Mechanics of Materials and Structures/NSF





The Mechanics of Materials and Structures program supports fundamental research in mechanics as related to the behavior of deformable solid materials and respective structures under internal and external actions. A diverse and interdisciplinary spectrum of research is supported with emphasis on research that leads to advances in i) theory, experimental, and/or computational methods in mechanics, and/or ii) uses contemporary mechanics methods to address modern challenges in materials and structures. Proposed research can focus on existing or emerging materials and structural systems, across time and length scales.


Proposals related to material response are welcome, and would propose, but not limited to, advances in fundamental understanding of deformation, fracture, fatigue, as well as on contact and friction through constitutive modeling, multi-scale (spatial or temporal) and multi-physics analysis, computational methods, or experimental techniques. Proposals that relate to structural response are welcome and would propose, but not limited to, advances in the understanding of nonlinear deformation, instability and collapse in the context of large deformation, wave propagation, multi-scale (spatial or temporal) and multi-physics analysis, computational methods, or experimental techniques.


Proposals at the intersection or considerate of the integration of material and structure (such as, but not limited to, metamaterials, hierarchical, microarchitectured and low-dimensional materials) are especially welcome. Of particular interest are research questions that address the integration and combination of geometry, topology of material distributions, lengthscales and deformation/failure mechanics. Within this context, the challenge of the notion of what constitutes a “material” or a “structure” is expected to lead to unique opportunities in terms of analysis and experimentation of novel response characteristics.


While the research results should contribute to ultimately guiding assessment of current engineering systems as well as developments of future innovative engineering material and structures with unusual, unprecedented and/or superior physical properties as identified in [1-2], the program emphasis is primarily on making fundamental new advances at the forefront of the field of mechanics.


Proposals with a focus on buildings and civil infrastructure system are welcome in CMMI and should be submitted to the program on Structural and Architectural Engineering (SAE). Proposals addressing processing and mechanical performance enhancements should be submitted to the Materials Engineering and Processing (MEP) program. Investigators with proposals focused on design methodological approaches and theory enabling the accelerated development and insertion of materials should consider the Design of Engineering Material Systems (DEMS) program.


Proposers who wish to discuss their proposed research related to the Mechanics of Materials and Structures program should discuss it with the Program Directors after sending a one-page white paper by email.


[1] National Academy of Engineering, Making a World of Difference: Engineering Ideas into Reality, National Academies Press, September 12, 2014.


[2] Materials Genome Initiative for Global Competitiveness,







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