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Fifth MPM Workshop, Corvallis, April 2-3, 2009

From Prof. John Nairn:

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to see if we can arrange the Fifth MPM Workshop to be held
at Oregon State University (Corvallis, OR) April 2 & 3, 2009.
Please respond soon (since time is getting short) with following items:

1. Attendence
    a. I will plan on attending
    b. I will try to attend if possible
    c. I cannot make it
    d. I could make a different date (this date was from a mini poll)

Glass rod deformed by light

Via Physical Review Focus:

What you see is an optical fiber recoiling due to pulse of light flowing through it.  The abstract:


Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 243601 (2008)

Observation of a Push Force on the End Face of a Nanometer Silica Filament Exerted by Outgoing Light

Position: Post-doc at the Univ. of Auckland, New Zealand

Project Title: Advanced Modelling and Simulation of Closed Mould
Composite Manufacturing Processes
Applications are invited for a postdoctoral research position on composite manufacturing processes with the Liquid Composite Moulding (LCM) Group at the University of Auckland. The successful candidate will play a major role in developing the LCM group’s research into advanced composites manufacturing processes (including I/CM, Resin Infusion, VARTM, and RTMLight).

Exact relations in the micromechanics of composites

There are several exact relations from the theory of composites that can be used to determine whether a new numerical or analytical approach gives reasonable answers. Here's a paper on some exact relations that I wrote up a long time ago and just recently posted on Scribd. 

The post LHC universe?

Most of you have heard about the commissioning of the Large Hadron Colider (LHC) by CERN and then the explosion of Helium followed by a postponement of operation until spring next year.  One of the worries some people had was that a mini black hole would be created by the collsions.  Also, the anthropic principle in one of its forms suggests that every possible universe exists but we see only our universe because it's the one in which intelligent observers exist.

How to ask a question on iMechanica

I've mostly had quite helpful responses from iMechanica participants whenever I've asked questions on this forum.  However, I've noticed that questions from several posters have gone unanswered.  I feel that there are two main reasons for that lack of response:

1) The questioner has not provided an adequate details by which they can be identified.  I generally don't like responding to a question posed by someone called xyz1983. 

A new theory of stress?

I was browsing the discussion page for Stress in Wikipedia when I came upon this interesting comment:


Refutation of Cauchy stress

The theory of stress based on Euler & Cauchy is now refuted. The profound incompatibility of this theory with the rest of physics, especially the theory of potentials and the theory of thermodynamics, has been documented in

Puzzle: What caused this failure?

Here's a puzzle for our readers.  The following image is of the surface of a failed joint followed by a picture of the joint (not the same one but a similar one) before joining.  What material is it? What caused the failure?  All manner of speculation is welcome.

Failed joint

Unfailed joint

Uncertainty quantification in mechanics

Modern composite structures have a wide spread in their failure stress.  Advanced multiphysics codes can have a wide range of predicted behavior for nominally the same inputs.  How do we certify the design of such structures or the accuracy of such codes?

A problem for mechanicians to solve?

A few weeks ago I had mentioned in one of my comments that

The factory idiom and material models

I'm leaving the US in a couple of days and will probably take a hiatus of a few months from iMechanica.  Before I leave, I want to tell you about a C++ idiom that eases the implementation and use of multiple material models in a computational mechanics code.

Version control systems and Subversion

I had promised to talk about subversion in my post on digitizing and editing figures but never quite got around to it. A recent spate of requests about downloading Uintah reminded me of my promise. So here's the story.


The following link brightened my day quite a bit.  Wikipedia can now be tasted! 

Job wikis

Those of you who are looking for academic jobs and have not heard back from the places that you applied may find the following wiki useful. 

The idea is to let people know whether a position has been filled or not.  You can add the positions you have applied to, whether you have been called for an interview, whether references have been requested, or whether you have got a rejection letter.


A fluid flow video

I just remembered another video that I had seen some time ago.  Many of you have probably seen it but here it is for those who have not. (The original page where I found it is

Prof. Pat McMurtry's explanation is:

Eigenmodes of a square plate

The following video is a nice depiction of how the eigenmodes of a plate change with increasing forcing frequency.

Another "straightforward" calculation

Following Andy's recommendation I have been reading Ellis Dill's Continuum Mechanics[1]. In page 75 of the book, we find the
well known result that the constitutive equation for an isotropic hypoelastic
material can be derived from a stored energy function only if

$\displaystyle \lambda + \mu = 0<br />


Mechanical threshold stress model for 6061-T6 aluminum

Our paper on the Mechanical threshold stress (MTS) model for 6061-T6 aluminum has been accepted by JoMMS.  There are several things of interest in the paper:

1) The use of a phonon drag model to predict the sharp increase in flow stress at strain rates above 10,000 /s.  This behavior is seen in a  number of materials and is hard to fit using standard power law plasticity models.  Our model does a good job in this regard.

Call for Minisymposia and Sessions at EM08

If you are a faculty member on the tenure-track or a post-doc it's a good idea to chair a few minisymposia at conferences to buttress your resume.  Here's an opportunity for you:


Via: Lori Graham-Brady 

Inaugural International Conference of the Engineering Mechanics
Institute (EM08)

Department of Civil Engineering
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN 55455
May 18-21, 2008

Call for Minisymposia and Sessions:

Tips for short presentations

I've been to two conferences this year and I've again seen the same annoying features in many talks that have been warned against by numerous people over the years.

Here are some tips that might come in handy :

2 post-doc openings at Cambridge Engineering Dept.

2 Research Associate Positions in
Dynamic Properties of Engineering Materials and Structures

Hypoelastic-plasticity with logarithmic spin

In small strain elastoplasticity we start off with an additive decomposition of the total strain into elastic and plastic parts. In terms of strain rates we write

$\displaystyle \dot{\ensuremath{\boldsymbol{\varepsilon}}} = \dot{\ensuremath{\boldsymbol{\varepsilon}}_e} + \dot{\ensuremath{\boldsymbol{\varepsilon}}_p}.<br />


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