Cellular Solids: Structure, Properties and Applications

Black and white drawing of cork suber cells and mimosa leaves.

Drawing of the structure of cork as described in Micrographia (1665) by Robert Hooke. Hooke was the first to apply the word "cell" to biological objects. (Image is in the public domain. See Wikimedia Commons.)


MIT Course Number

3.054 / 3.36

As Taught In

Spring 2015


Undergraduate / Graduate

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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

This course reviews the processing and structure of cellular materials as they are created from polymers, metals, ceramics, glasses, and composites, develops models for the mechanical behavior of cellular solids, and shows how the unique properties of honeycombs and foams are exploited in applications such as lightweight structural panels, energy absorption devices and thermal insulation. The applications of cellular solids in medicine include increased fracture risk due to trabecular bone loss in patients with osteoporosis, the development of metal foam coatings for orthopaedic implants, and designing porous scaffolds for tissue engineering that mimic the extracellular matrix. Modelling of cellular materials applied to natural materials and biomimicking is explored. Students taking the graduate version of the class are required to complete additional assignments.

Related Content

Lorna Gibson. 3.054 Cellular Solids: Structure, Properties and Applications. Spring 2015. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, https://ocw.mit.edu. License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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