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Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering & Computer Science Department of Mechanical & Materials Engineering

Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Research News

DU's Human Dynamics Lab and DU's Sports Medicine Department Team up to Study Swimmer Injuries

Recognizing that upper-extremity injuries are the most common problems faced by competitive swimmers, due to the stress and tension put on the upper body by swimming, trainers in the University’s sports medicine department and engineers from its Human Dynamics Laboratory joined forces to look for a solution.


Exercise Video

DU's Ground Breaking for the new Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science Building

On May 6th, the University of Denver broke ground for the construction of the new facility that will house the Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science and the Knoebel Center for the Study of Aging. Construction on the building is estimated to take 18–24 months to complete.

University officials unveiled the new building as part of a broader announcement regarding its intent to expand interdisciplinary STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) offerings. The facility will provide space for increased collaboration among complementary programs, creating a hub for interdisciplinary research and scholarship. It also will serve as an anchor for STEM-related disciplines on the southern portion of campus.

Dr. Peter Laz Speaks at the Provost's Spring Luncheon

Dr. Peter Laz Provost Luncheon PresentationYou may view the full presentation of The Engineering of Joint Replacement Implants through this link.

Peter Laz is an Associate Professor in Mechanical and Materials Engineering. He has been an investigator on industry, federal (NSF, NIH) and foundation grants and authored 30+ journal papers and 85+ conference publications. He also received the Best Teacher Award for DU’s Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science in 2010. He received his Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Duke University and his MS and PhD degrees in mechanical engineering from Purdue University. He was a Fulbright scholar in Germany and also worked at Southwest Research Institute before joining the faculty at DU in 2001.


Knoebel Institute Funding Recipients: Dr. Bradley Davidson and Dr. Ali Azadani

Congratulations to Dr. Bradley Davidson and Dr. Ali Azadani on being awarded funding by the Knoebel Institute. Funding is awarded to faculty for pilot research projects in the area of aging research. The goals of the fund are to support an increase in external federal funding in aging / longevity, advance areas of aging / longevity research strength at DU, support development of new areas of aging/longevity research, and promote interdisciplinary partnerships as appropriate. 

The title of Dr. Davidson's research is "Improving rehabilitation after lower-extremity joint replacement surgery by considering regional interdependence in the musculoskeletal system."

The Title of Dr. Azadani's research is "Long-term durability assessment of transcatheter aortic valves: a pilot feasibility study."

University of Denver Awarded New NSF Industry and University Cooperative Research Center for Novel High Voltage/Temperature Materials and Structures

The University of Denver in collaboration with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and the Michigan Technological University received this five year renewable grant to collaborate with corporations to further basic materials research. The Center’s mission is to provide a forum for industry/university cooperative research including evaluation, design, modeling, and development of novel advanced materials for high voltage/temperature (HV/T) applications for energy transfer, aerospace, automotive and other applications. The Center will also create a diverse and interdisciplinary educational and business environment for a large number of students, directly interacting with the best engineers in this area.

After a thorough review process, NSF approved the establishment of this new Center to be one of only 42 engineering collaborative research centers in the entire country. In founding the Center, the three universities received membership commitments from nine major corporations, including Lockheed Martin, Western Area Power Administration, Southwire, Bonneville Power Administration, Composite Technology Development, BP, Boeing, Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, and MacLean Power Systems, who pledged a total of $520,000 to support the research aims. These corporations and others who join will serve as the Industry Advisory Board (IAB) for the Center, approving projects, reviewing results, and allocating research funds to ensure that program aims are being met and that the research is industrially relevant.  (full press release)

Companies interested in becoming a member or seeking more information should contact Dr. Maciej Kumosa. or Eva Hakansson, Marketing Director of the University of Denver site.

New High-Speed Stereo Radiography System in the Center for Orthopaedic Biomechanics

A High Speed Stereo Radiography System, also called biplane fluoroscopy, is an accurate imaging technique allowing researchers to track the motion of bones and implants while patients perform a variety of activities. This is useful for investigating pathology in joints and evaluating how well joint replacement implants reproduce natural motions.

"The new system will enable understanding and improve treatment of orthopaedic pathologies from the cervical spine to the foot, and we are excited to contribute to helping patients thrive," said Paul Rullkoetter, a professor at the Center for Orthopaedic Biomechanics in the Mechanical and Materials Engineering Department. Students and researchers at the University already partner with Colorado Joint Replacement at Porter Adventist Hospital and hope this new addition will grow new collaborations with area surgeons and implant manufacturers.

"We are extremely excited about our partnership with the engineers at DU to push orthopaedic research to a whole new level," said Raymond Kim, orthopaedic surgeon with Colorado Joint Replacement at Porter Adventist Hospital. "The biplanar fluoroscopy system will have an extremely powerful impact on our ability to study knee and hip replacements by helping us understand the way joints behave and move, which will allow us to optimize surgical technique, as well as design future total joint implants that can further improve patient outcomes."

The System was developed with support from the National Science Foundation and is currently housed at the Human Dynamics Lab inside the Ritchie Center. It will find a permanent home inside the new building for the Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering & Computer Science, which breaks ground this May.

For further information on partnering with the Center for Orthopaedic Biomechanics please visit their website.