Department of Materials and Metallurgical Engineering

About MTLS

Materials & Metallurgical Engineering

Chair: Dr. T. David Burleigh

There are approximately 50 undergraduate and 30 graduate students in the program.

Materials Engineering is the development, analysis and implementation of speciality materials (metals, polymers, ceramics, etc.) Examples include the epoxy composites of the Boeing Dreamliner, the metal alloy used in GE's 3D printed LEAP jet engine; and the ultrathin glasses used in all cell phones.

Materials Engineers invent new materials, improve existing materials, develop manufacturing techniques for materials, analyze materials properties and understand what cause materials to fail. This includes laboratory and analytical work. Students develop skills in both areas.

Materials Engineering is a research and design driven program. Our undergraduate students make important contributions to the department's research effort by working on projects with professors. Student research frequently results in publications in professional journals or presentations at conferences.

Materials Engineering contributes to the benefits from advances in many fields including chemistry, condensed matter physics, molecular biology, mathematics, computer science and related engineering disciplines. 

Nearly half of the graduates from Materials Engineering continue to graduate school. Some enter our combined BS/MS program while others directly enter doctoral programs at top-ranked universities across the country (examples include Purdue, Stanford, Berkeley, and Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign). The other half of our graduates find employment with industry (examples include Intel, Lockheed-Martin and Boeing) and national / government labs (examples include Sandia, Los Alamos and NavAir).

The Materials Engineering program at New Mexico Tech offers the Bachelor of Science (BS), the Master of Science (MS), the Master of Engineeing, (ME) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees.

History:  Metallurgy was one of the first programs at New Mexico School of Mines when it was founded in 1889 to support the local mining industry.  The original emphasis of metallurgy was extractive metallurgy, the science of winning the metal from the ore.  Later metallurgy would encompass physical metalliurgy, the science of alloying, thermal-mechanical processing, and strengthening. of metals.  In the 1990's the decision was made to depart from extractive metallurgy, and broaden into other engineering materials, including polymers, ceramics, semiconductors, and composites, in addition to metals.  The catalog abbreviation for the department has evolved from MET, to MAT, to METE and MATE, and currently, MTLS.