Plastic deformation at the nanoscale

Plastic deformation at the nanoscale

Molecular dynamics simulations of nanoindetation. Atomistic simulations allow to identify the dislocation mechanisms that control the plastic deformation at the nanoscale.

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Multiscale Modelling

We study mechanical properties at the nanoscale by combining different simulation levels

Mechanical Properties under Irradiation

Coupling dislocation theories with diffusion theories, to simulate mechanical properties under irradiation

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Contact Mechanics

The dynamic process of adhesive contact between two surfaces of atomic dimensions

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Dislocation Properties

Dislocation motion is the origin of plasticity in metals. Understanding their dynamic properties is essential to establish a reliable dislocation-based plasticity theory.

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Image courtesy of SGI


The laboratory's facilities include a TTN/SGI computer cluster with 192 compute cores. We call it: "BigMech-Sim" - the cluster of NanoMechSim. (Image courtesy of TTN/SGI)

The Nanomechanics Simulations Laboratory’s mission is to study the mechanical properties of nanometer-size specimens and surfaces with atomic- and mesoscopic simulation techniques.


Understanding mechanical properties on very small scales is important, not only for developing a fundamental understanding of plasticity, but also to provide design guidelines for reliable nano- and micro-electromechanical devices. With the technological drive towards devices with smaller dimensions, new crucial phenomena play an important role in their mechanical properties. However, as the dimensions of the devices decrease into the sub-micrometer range, the size prevails, and the traditional approaches developed for bulk materials can no longer be used. The aim of the NanoMechanics Simulations Laboratory is to develop and employ atomic- and mesoscale simulation techniques to study the mechanical properties of nanometer-size specimens and surfaces.

Post-doctoral research positions available

A post-doctoral research position is available on the developing a multiscale approach to calculate the strength at the nanoscale.

Graduate student research positions available

Ms.C. and Ph.D positions are available in our group. Qualified candidates will join one of our activities: (1) Multiscale modelling of plasticity at the nanoscale; (2) Surfaces, interfaces and boundaries properties; (3) Irradiation-driven deformation; (4) Defect properties. Strong programming background in encouraged but is not obligatory. While the laboratory activities spans over many fields of engineering and physics, students with background in mechanical engineering, materials engineering, physics, chemistry, mathematics and computer science can apply.

Interested applicants can send send a curriculum vitae to Dr. Dan Mordehai.

Undergraduate student projects

Computational projects can be performed in our group. For a list of possible project and more details, please contact Dr. Dan Mordehai.