Masters Program

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Master of Science Degree Program

The program leading to the Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering requires completion of a minimum of 30 points of approved course work consisting of no fewer than ten courses. A thesis based on either experimental, computational, or analytical research is optional and may be counted in lieu of up to 6 points of course work. In general, attainment of the degree requires two or three semesters of full-time study, although it may also be undertaken on a part-time basis over a correspondingly longer period. A minimum grade point average of 2.5 is required for graduation and matriculation.

The M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering requires a student to take a sequence of courses that shows a “clearly discernible specialty or concentration.” In consultation with his/her advisor, an M.S. student can develop a concentration specifically tailored to his/her interests and objectives, and we refer to this as the Standard Track. Alternatively, M.S. students can pick from a set of pre-defined concentrations, or Special Tracks.

Typical choices of concentration in the Standard Track include such subjects as mechanics of solids and fluids, thermodynamics, heat transfer, manufacturing engineering, robotics, kinematics, dynamics and vibrations, controls, and power generation. Nevertheless, the following guidelines must be adhered to:

1. The sequence of courses selected must show a clearly discernible specialty or concentration.

2. All courses must be at the graduate level, i.e., numbered 4000 or higher, with a minimum of (6 pts) 6000-level or higher (lecture) courses included.  

3. Every program must contain at least one course in mathematics (APMA, MATH, STAT, SIEO course designations), covering material beyond what the student has taken previously. It should appear early in the sequence in order to serve as a basis for the technical course work.

4. Out-of-department study is encouraged, but at least five courses (min 15 pts)  must be in mechanical engineering.

Rather than apply for the Standard Track, students can apply for a Special Track in either Energy Systems or in Micro/Nanoscale Engineering. The requirements for a Special Track are identical to those of the Standard Track, with the exception a special track student must take at least 15 of his/her points from a list determined by a Special Track Advisor in consultation with a Special Track Advisory Committee. The name of the special track will be listed on a student’s transcript. The currently available Special Tracks are listed below.

M.S. in Mechanical Engineering with Concentration in Energy Systems

Advisors: Profs. Pejman Akbari and Vijay Modi

The concentration in energy systems provides the M.S. candidate with a global understanding of current energy challenges. Advanced thermofluidic knowledge is provided to design and optimize energy systems, with a strong emphasis on renewable energies. Courses related to energy and environmental policy, two strong areas of Columbia as a global university, can be integrated into the course sequence. This concentration is a suitable preparation for careers in energy production and energy consultation.

Requirements: While satisfying the general mechanical engineering requirements**, take at least five courses from:

MECE E4210: Energy infrastructure planning
MECE E4211: Energy: sources and conversion
MECE E4302: Advanced thermodynamics
MECE E4304: Turbomachinery
MECE E4305: Mechanics and thermodynamics propulsion
MECE E4312: Solar thermal engineering
MECE E4314: Energy dynamics of green buildings
MECE E6100: Advanced mechanics of fluids
MECE E6104: Case studies in computational fluid dynamics
MECE E6313: Advanced heat transfer
APPH E4130: Physics of solar energy
EAEE E6126: Carbon sequestration
EAEE E6208: Combustion chemistry or processes
INTA W4200: Alternative energy resources
ARCH A4684: Sustainable design
SIPA U4727: Environmental politics and policy management
SIPA U6060: International energy systems and business structures
SUMA K4260: Dynamics of Energy Efficiency
EAEE E4190: Photovoltaic Systems Engineering
ELEN E4510: Solar Energy and Smart Grid Power Systems


One 3-point research course can be counted towards the concentration if the research is approved by advisor and is energy related.

M.S. in Mechanical Engineering with Concentration in Micro/Nanoscale Engineering
Advisors: Profs. James Hone and Jeff Kysar

The concentration in Micro/Nanoscale Engineering provides the MS candidate with an understanding of engineering challenges and opportunities in micro- and nano-scale systems. The curriculum addresses fundamental issues of mechanics, fluid mechanics, optics, heat transfer, and manufacturing at small size scales. Application areas include MEMS, bio-MEMS, microfluidics, thermal systems, and carbon nanostructures.

Requirements: While satisfying the general mechanical engineering requirements, take at least five courses from:

MECE E4212: Microelectromechanical systems
MECE E4213: bioMEMS
MECE E6700: Carbon nanotubes
MECE E6710: Nanofabrication laboratory
MECE E8990: Small scale Mechanical Behavior
MECE E6105: Transport phenomena in the presence of interfaces
MECE E6720: Nano/Microscale thermal transport processes                                                         
ELEN E4503: Sensors, actuators, and electromechanical systems
ELEN E6945: Device nanofabrication
BMEN E4590:BioMEMS: Cellular and Molecular Applications
MSAE E4090:Nanotechnology

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