MSE at Maryland

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Materials Science and Engineering is a multidisciplinary field focused on generating fundamental and practical knowledge and expertise for understanding and manipulating the structure and the performance of materials. Many major advances in science and technology (e.g. space exploration, renewable energy generation, optic-fiber networking, organ-replacement surgery) have been predicated on advances in underlying materials systems. Breakthroughs in materials science will continue to bring benefits to society – the Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) at the University of Maryland, through its education and research programs, will continue to provide leadership and innovation for advancing the discipline.

Quality Education

The UMD Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) provides educational programs at the B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. levels. Students in our undergraduate program receive a strong engineering education and become able to design and engineer materials and materials systems in industry, research institutions and government agencies. Our undergraduate program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET ( Our graduate programs in Materials Science and Engineering are research-focused and encompass advanced education in the entire spectrum of the field of materials, preparing graduates to address the challenges of next-generation materials technologies and take leadership position in the field.

Cutting-Edge Research

All our faculty members engage in research at the frontier of the field  – providing materials with advanced properties, developing the scientific instruments of tomorrow, and discovering the physics and chemistry principles that govern materials behavior. Our faculty has a strong presence in the Maryland NanoCenter and the Maryland Energy Innovation Institute, and active collaborations with national government laboratories such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, the DOE National Laboratories, the National Institutes of Health, and the Army, Air Force and Navy Research Laboratories.

Facts & Figures

  • Founded in 1950
  • More than $13.5 million in research expenditures in 2018
  • 18 tenure-track faculty
  • Leadership in the Maryland Nanocenter
  • Leadership in the Maryland Energy Innovation Institute
  • Growing undergraduate program
  • Administrator of the Minor for Undergraduates in Nanoscale Science & Technology
  • Enrollment: 130 (Fall 2018)
  • Female students: 25% (2018)
  • Degrees awarded: 38 (Spring 2018)
  • Enrollment: 75 (Fall 2018)
  • Female students: 27 % (Spring 2018)
  • Degrees awarded: 21 (Spring 2018)
Clark School Facts & Figures

Meet the Chair

Ray Phaneuf

Chair Ray PhaneufProfessor Ray Phaneuf  joined UMD’s Department of Physics in 1985, where he used electron diffraction to study phase transformations on stepped Si(111) surfaces, resulting in the identification of a thermodynamically driven faceting associated with the formation of the (7x7) reconstruction. In 1989 he visited Ernst Bauer’s group in Clausthal, Germany, using low energy electron microscopy (LEEM) to image this faceting in real time.

In 2000 he joined the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and began studies of directed self-organization during growth and sublimation on semiconductor surfaces, using lithographic patterning. Dr. Phaneuf was a founding member of the UM-MRSEC. In 2006 he was a visiting professor at the National Nanotechnology Laboratory, in Lecce, Italy. He is the founding director of the Interdisciplinary Minor in Nanoscience and Technology at UMD.

Dr. Phaneuf has authored more than 80 papers in archival journals, and has given over 40 invited talks on his work in the U.S., Europe and Japan. He was named the Laboratory for Physical Sciences Faculty Researcher of the year in 2002. In addition to MSE, Dr. Phaneuf has affiliate positions in Physics and the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. His current research is in the fields of directing self-assembly of nanostructures at the mesoscale, plasmonics, and the application of nanotechnology to the conservation of cultural heritage.