Lawrence N. Virgin

Thomas Lord Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Professor in the Thomas Lord Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Lawrence N. Virgin Profile Photo
Lawrence N. Virgin Profile Photo

Bio

Professor Virgin's research is centered on studying the behavior of nonlinear dynamical systems. This work may be broadly divided into two components. First, investigation of the fundamental nature of nonlinear systems based on a mathematical description of their underlying equations of motion. Both analytical and numerical techniques are used with special attention focused on the loss of stability of dynamical systems.

The second area of interest is to apply recent results from nonlinear dynamical systems theory to problems of practical engineering importance. These include the nonlinear rolling motion of ships leading to capsize; buckling of axially-loaded structural components; aeroelastic flutter of aircraft panels at high supersonic speeds; vibration isolation based on nonlinear springs; energy harvesting; damage detection and structural health monitoring; and the dynamics of very flexible structures including solar sails and marine risers. Professor Virgin conducts mechanical experiments to complement these studies.

The flavor of much of this work is contained in the books:

Introduction to Experimental Nonlinear Dynamics, L.N. Virgin, Cambridge University Press, 2000.

Vibration of Axially Loaded Structures, L.N. Virgin, Cambridge University Press, 2007.

Education

  • B.S. University of Manchester (United Kingdom), 1981
  • M.S. Cardiff University (United Kingdom), 1982
  • Ph.D. University of London (United Kingdom), 1986

Positions

  • Professor in the Thomas Lord Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science
  • Director of Graduate Studies

Awards, Honors, and Distinctions

  • Frocht Award. Society for Experimental Mechanics. 2016
  • International Gas Turbine Institute's (IGTI) J. P. Davis Award. American Society of Mechanical Engineers. 2012

Courses Taught

  • CEE 647: Buckling of Engineering Structures
  • EGR 393: Research Projects in Engineering
  • ME 392: Undergraduate Projects in Mechanical Engineering
  • ME 473: Aerospace Structures
  • ME 490: Special Topics in Mechanical Engineering
  • ME 494: Engineering Undergraduate Fellows Projects
  • ME 527: Buckling of Engineering Structures
  • ME 555: Advanced Topics in Mechanical Engineering
  • ME 592: Research Independent Study in Mechanical Engineering or Material Science