UCSB Engineering

Robert McMeeking


Mechanical Engineering

Robert McMeeking


Department of Mechanical and Enviromental Engineering
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106

tel: (805) 893-8434
fax: (805) 893-8651

Personal web site

Research Description

Solid Mechanics, Materials, and Structures: mechanics of materials, fracture, plasticity, composite materials, materials processing, materials durability, multifunctional materials and structures, thermal barrier coatings, blast and fragment resistant structures, biomechanics, cell mechanics.


He was at Stanford University for 2 years working on metal forming problems with Professor Erastus H. Lee. After seven years at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on the faculty of the Theoretical and Applied Mechanics Department, Dr. McMeeking came to UCSB in 1985 as Professor of Materials and of Mechanical and Environmental Engineering. He was Chair of the Department of Mechanical and Environmental Engineering at UCSB in 1992-1995 and again during 1999-2003. He has published over 200 scientific papers on such subjects as plasticity, fracture mechanics, computational methods, glaciology, tough ceramics, composite materials, materials processing, powder consolidation and sintering, ferroelectrics, structural evolution, nanotribology, actuating structures, blast and fragment protection of structures, biomechanics and the mechanics of the cell and cytoskeleton. In 1983, Professor McMeeking was a Science and Engineering Research Council Senior Visiting Fellow at Cambridge University. Later, in 1995-1996 he spent a year as a Visiting Professor at Cambridge University with the honor of a position as Visiting Scholar at Pembroke College. He was Southwest Mechanics Lecturer in 1988, a Plenary Lecturer at the Seventh International Congress on Fracture in 1989 and was honored as a Midwest Mechanics Lecturer in 1992-93. In 1998 he was elected to Fellow grade in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and in 2002 was recognized by the Institute for Scientific Information as a Highly Cited Researcher in the fields of Materials Science and Engineering. He was promoted to Fellow of the American Academy of Mechanics in 2002 and elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2005. He was honored with an Alexander von Humboldt Resarch Award in 2004. Dr. McMeeking has served as a reviewer for funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy and the Army Research Office in the US and for the funding agencies of Austria, Denmark, Hong Kong, Sweden and the United Kingdom. He is active in consulting for medical devices manufacturers and other industrial entities on topics of mechanical stress, fatigue life, fracture and ferroelectric devices. He was Associate Editor of the ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics, 1987-93 and is currently Editor for the term 2002-2012. He is an editorial board member for several journals in the fields of solid mechanics and materials and has reviewed for all the major journals in solid mechanics, materials and computational mechanics.


  • Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Department of Materials


  • Member, National Academy of Engineering, 2005
  • Alexander von Humboldt Award for Senior U.S. Scientists, 2004
  • Fellow, American Academy of Mechanics, 2002
  • Highly Cited Researcher in Materials Science and Engineering, ISI, 2002
  • Fellow, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 1998
  • "The Weight Function Method for Determining Stress Intensity Factors" (1976) republished in the SPIE Milestones Series Volume Crack Tip Stress Fields., 1997
  • Visiting Scholar, Pembroke College; Visiting Professor, Cambridge University, 1995-1996
  • Midwest Mechanics Series Lecturer, 1992-1993
  • Southwest Mechanics Series Lecturer, 1988
  • Science and Engineering Research Council Visiting Fellow, Cambridge University, England, 1983
  • University Fellowship, Brown University, 1972-1973
  • University of Glasgow, Gray, Law and Watt Scholarship, 1972-1973
  • University of Glasgow, Goudie, George Harvey and George Russel Prizes, 1972

Selected Publications

  • The Response of Metallic Sandwich Panels to Water Blast, Journal of Applied Mechanics, 74, 2007, 81-99, Y. Liang, A.V. Spuskanyuk, S.E. Flores, D.R. Hayhurst, J.W. Hutchinson, R.M. McMeeking and A.G. Evans
  • A Bio-Chemo-Mechanical Model for Cell Contractility, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 103, 2006, 14015-14020, V.S. Deshpande, R.M. McMeeking and A.G. Evans
  • A Finite Element Simulation Scheme for Biological Muscular Hydrostats, Journal of Theoretical Biology, 242, 2006, 142-150, Y. Liang, R.M. McMeeking and A.G. Evans
  • Electrostatic Forces and Stored Energy for Deformable Dielectric Materials, Journal of Applied Mechanics, 72, 2005, 581-590, R.M. McMeeking and C.M. Landis
  • A Phenomenological Multiaxial Constitutive Law for Switching in Polycrystalline Ferroelectric Ceramics, International Journal of Engineering Science, 40, 2002, 1553-1577, R.M. McMeeking and C.M. Landis
  • The Elastic Response of a Cohesive Aggregate – A Discrete Element Model with Coupled Particle Interactions, Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 50, 2002, 2539-2575, G. Jefferson, G. Haritos and R.M. McMeeking
  • A Constitutive Model for Ferroelectric Polycrystals, Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 47, 1999, 1663-1697, J.E. Huber, N.A. Fleck, C.M. Landis, and Robert McMeeking
  • Crack Tip Energy Release Rate for a Piezoelectric Compact Tension Specimen, Engineering Fracture Mechanics, 64, 1999, 217-244, Robert McMeeking
  • Laminar Ceramics that Exhibit a Threshold Strength, Science, 286, 1999, 102-105, M.P. Rao, A.J. Sanchez-Herencia, G.E. Beltz,F.F. Lange and Robert McMeeking
  • Optimal Threshold Strength of Laminar Ceramics, Zeitschrift fuer Metallkunde, 90, 1999, 1031-1036, K. Hbaieb and Robert McMeeking