Mechanics of Meta-materials and Meta-structures (M^3)

We are interested in mechanics of slender structures and their applications in metamaterials and metastructures with innovative functions, including tunable mechanical properties, such as stress-strain relation, energy absorption and vibration isolation; as well as programmable robotic behaviours, such as shape-morphing, mechanical sensing, actuation, memory and computation. We aim to design and analyse such kind of intelligent systems by harnessing mechanics theory, numerical simulations and physical experiments.

Research Summary

The Principal Investigator

Dr. Mingchao Liu (刘明超) is currently an Assistant Professor at University of Birmingham and holding a concurrent appointment as a Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. Before that he was a Newton International Fellow at the Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford, sponsored by the Royal Society from 2018 to 2021. He graduated from Tsinghua University in 2018 with a PhD in Engineering from the Department of Engineering Mechanics. During his Ph.D study, he spent six months in 2017 as a visiting research fellow at the University of Sydney under the support of the Endeavour Research Fellowship. Prior to this, He received his B.S. in Engineering Mechanics from Shandong University in 2013.

Recent News

  1. 2023/05: Our paper, ‘Bifurcations and stability analysis of elastic slender structures using static discrete elastic rods method.’, has been published in JAM.
  2. 2023/04: Our paper, ‘Encoding and storage of information in mechanical metamaterials.’, has been published in Adv. Sci., which is Highlighted in Advanced Science News.
  3. 2023/02: Our paper, ‘Modeling of magnetic cilia carpet robots using discrete differential geometry formulation.’, has been published in EML.
  4. 2023/02: Our paper, ‘A discrete model for the geometrically nonlinear mechanics of hard-magnetic slender structures.’, has been published in EML.
  5. 2023/01: Our paper, ‘Insect-scale jumping robots enabled by a dynamic buckling cascade.’, has been published in PNAS, which is Highlighted in TechXplore, University Oxford News, Oxford Mathematical Institute Case Study, and Science.
  6. 2023/01: Dr. Liu has been appointed as the Extreme Mechanics Letters - Early Career Advisory Board (EML-ECAB) member. Congratulations!
  7. 2022/11: Our paper, ‘Snap-induced morphing: From a single bistable shell to the origin of shape bifurcation in interacting shells.’, has been published in JMPS.
  8. 2022/09: Our paper, ‘Modular multistable metamaterials with reprogrammable mechanical properties.’, has been published in Eng Struct.
  9. 2022/08: Our paper, ‘Shape-morphing structures based on perforated kirigami.’, has been published in EML.